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Putignani L.,Unit of Parasitology | Del Chierico F.,Unit of Metagenomics | Vernocchi P.,Unit of Metagenomics | Cicala M.,Biomedical University of Rome | And 2 more authors.
Inflammatory Bowel Diseases | Year: 2016

Gastrointestinal disorders, although clinically heterogeneous, share pathogenic mechanisms, including genetic susceptibility, impaired gut barrier function, altered microbiota, and environmental triggers (infections, social and behavioral factors, epigenetic control, and diet). Gut microbiota has been studied for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in either children or adults, while modifiable gut microbiota features, acting as risk and premorbid factors along the childhood-adulthood transition, have not been thoroughly investigated so far. Indeed, the relationship between variations of the entire host/microbiota/environmental scenario and clinical phenotypes is still not fully understood. In this respect, tracking gut dysbiosis grading may help deciphering host phenotype-genotype associations and microbiota shifts in an integrated top-down omics-based approach within large-scale pediatric and adult case-control cohorts. Large-scale gut microbiota signatures and host inflammation patterns may be integrated with dietary habits, under genetic and epigenetic constraints, providing gut dysbiosis profiles acting as risk predictors of IBD or IBS in preclinical cases. Tracking dysbiosis supports new personalized/stratified IBD and IBS prevention programmes, generating Decision Support System tools. They include (1) high risk or flare-up recurrence-omics-based dysbiosis profiles; (2) microbial and molecular biomarkers of health and disease; (3)-omics-based pipelines for laboratory medicine diagnostics; (4) health apps for self-management of score-based dietary profiles, which can be shared with clinicians for nutritional habit and lifestyle amendment; (5)-omics profiling data warehousing and public repositories for IBD and IBS profile consultation. Dysbiosis-related indexes can represent novel laboratory and clinical medicine tools preventing or postponing the disease, finally interfering with its natural history. © 2016 Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America, Inc.

Pietrantoni E.,San Camillo Forlanini Hospital | Del Chierico F.,Unit of Metagenomics | Rigon G.,San Camillo Forlanini Hospital | Vernocchi P.,Unit of Metagenomics | And 5 more authors.
International Journal of Molecular Sciences | Year: 2014

Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) are required to maintain the fluidity, permeability and integrity of cell membranes. Maternal dietary supplementation with ω-3 PUFAs during pregnancy has beneficial effects, including increased gestational length and reduced risk of pregnancy complications. Significant amounts of ω-3 docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) are transferred from maternal to fetal blood, hence ensuring high levels of DHA in the placenta and fetal bloodstream and tissues. Fetal DHA demand increases exponentially with gestational age, especially in the third trimester, due to fetal development. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), a daily intake of DHA is recommended during pregnancy. Omega-3 PUFAs are involved in several anti-inflammatory, pro-resolving and anti-oxidative pathways. Several placental disorders, such as intrauterine growth restriction, premature rupture of membranes (PROM) and preterm-PROM (pPROM), are associated with placental inflammation and oxidative stress. This pilot study reports on a preliminary evaluation of the significance of the daily DHA administration on PROM and pPROM events in healthy pregnant women. Further extensive clinical trials will be necessary to fully elucidate the correlation between DHA administration during pregnancy and PROM/pPROM occurrence, which is related in turn to gestational duration and overall fetal health. © 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Putignani L.,Unit of Parasitology | Del Chierico F.,Unit of Metagenomics | Petrucca A.,Unit of Metagenomics | Vernocchi P.,Unit of Metagenomics | And 2 more authors.
Pediatric Research | Year: 2014

The microbiota "organ" is the central bioreactor of the gastrointestinal tract, populated by a total of 10 14 bacteria and characterized by a genomic content (microbiome), which represents more than 100 times the human genome. The microbiota plays an important role in child health by acting as a barrier against pathogens and their invasion with a highly dynamic modality, exerting metabolic multistep functions and stimulating the development of the host immune system, through well-organized programming, which influences all of the growth and aging processes. The advent of "omics" technologies (genomics, proteomics, metabolomics), characterized by complex technological platforms and advanced analytical and computational procedures, has opened new avenues to the knowledge of the gut microbiota ecosystem, clarifying some aspects on the establishment of microbial communities that constitute it, their modulation and active interaction with external stimuli as well as food, within the host genetic variability. With a huge interdisciplinary effort and an interface work between basic, translational, and clinical research, microbiologists, specialists in "-omics" disciplines, and clinicians are now clarifying the role of the microbiota in the programming process of several gut-related diseases, from the physiological symbiosis to the microbial dysbiosis stage, through an integrated systems biology approach.Copyright © 2014 International Pediatric Research Foundation, Inc.

Del Chierico F.,Unit of Metagenomics | Vernocchi P.,Unit of Metagenomics | Vernocchi P.,University of Bologna | Dallapiccola B.,Bambino Gesu Childrens Hospital | Putignani L.,Unit of Parasitology
International Journal of Molecular Sciences | Year: 2014

The Mediterranean diet (MD) is considered one of the healthiest dietary models. Many of the characteristic components of the MD have functional features with positive effects on health and wellness. The MD adherence, calculated through various computational scores, can lead to a reduction of the incidence of major diseases (e.g., cancers, metabolic and cardiovascular syndromes, neurodegenerative diseases, type 2 diabetes and allergy). Furthermore, eating habits are the main significant determinants of the microbial multiplicity of the gut, and dietary components influence both microbial populations and their metabolic activities from the early stages of life. For this purpose, we present a study proposal relying on the generation of individual gut microbiota maps from MD-aware children/adolescents. The maps, based on meta-omics approaches, may be considered as new tools, acting as a systems biology-based proof of evidence to evaluate MD effects on gut microbiota homeostasis. Data integration of food metabotypes and gut microbiota "enterotypes" may allow one to interpret MD adherence and its effects on health in a new way, employable for the design of targeted diets and nutraceutical interventions in childcare and clinical management of food-related diseases, whose onset has been significantly shifted early in life. © 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Tabanelli G.,University of Bologna | Vernocchi P.,University of Bologna | Patrignani F.,University of Bologna | Chierico F.D.,Unit of Metagenomics | And 5 more authors.
Frontiers in Microbiology | Year: 2015

Applying sub-lethal levels of high-pressure homogenization (HPH) to lactic acid bacteria has been proposed as a method of enhancing some of their functional properties. Because the principal targets of HPH are the cell-surface structures, the aim of this study was to examine the effect of sub-lethal HPH treatment on the outermost cellular structures and the proteomic profiles of two known probiotic bacterial strains. Moreover, the effect of HPH treatment on the metabolism of probiotic cells within a dairy product during its refrigerated storage was investigated using SPME-GC-MS. Transmission electron microscopy was used to examine the microstructural changes in the outermost cellular structures due to HPH treatment. These alterations may be involved in the changes in some of the technological and functional properties of the strains that were observed after pressure treatment. Moreover, the proteomic profiles of the probiotic strains treated with HPH and incubated at 37°C for various periods showed different peptide patterns compared with those of the untreated cells. In addition, there were differences in the peaks that were observed in the low-mass spectral region (2000-3000 Da) of the spectral profiles of the control and treated samples. Due to pressure treatment, the volatile-molecule profiles of buttermilk inoculated with treated or control cells and stored at 4°C for 30 days exhibited overall changes in the aroma profile and in the production of molecules that improved its sensory profile, although the two different species imparted specific fingerprints to the product. The results of this study will contribute to understanding the changes that occur in the outermost cellular structures and the metabolism of LAB in response to HPH treatment. The findings of this investigation may contribute to elucidating the relationships between these changes and the alterations of the technological and functional properties of LAB induced by pressure treatment. © 2015 Tabanelli, Vernocchi, Patrignani, Del Chierico, Putignani, Vinderola, Reinheimer, Gardini and Lanciotti.

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