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Gut Pathog. 2016 May 28;8:25. doi: 10.1186/s13099-016-0107-3. eCollection 2016.

Analysis of cultivable microbiota and diet intake pattern of the long-lived naked mole-rat.

Author information

1
Medical Faculty, Institute of Biochemistry, University of Leipzig, Johannisallee 30, 04103 Leipzig, Germany ; Medical Faculty, Institute of Medical Microbiology, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany ; College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Bahir Dar University, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia.
2
Department of Reproduction Management, Leibniz-Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research, Berlin, Germany.
3
Institute of Pharmacy, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.
4
Leibniz Institute on Aging-Fritz Lipmann Institute, Jena, Germany.
5
College of Natural Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
6
College of Veterinary Medicine and Agriculture, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
7
Department of Visceral, Transplantation, Thoracic and Vascular Surgery, University Medical Center Leipzig, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.
8
Medical Faculty, Institute of Medical Microbiology, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.
9
Medical Faculty, Institute of Biochemistry, University of Leipzig, Johannisallee 30, 04103 Leipzig, Germany.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

A variety of microbial communities exist throughout the human and animal body. Genetics, environmental factors and long-term dietary habit contribute to shaping the composition of the gut microbiota. For this reason the study of the gut microbiota of a mammal exhibiting an extraordinary life span is of great importance. The naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber) is a eusocial mammal known for its longevity and cancer resistance.

METHODS:

Here we analyzed its gut microbiota by cultivating the bacteria under aerobic and anaerobic conditions and identifying their species by mass spectrometry.

RESULTS:

Altogether, 29 species of microbes were identified, predominantly belonging to Firmicutes, and Bacteroidetes. The most frequent species were Bacillus megaterium (45.2 %), followed by Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron (19.4 %), Bacteroides ovatus, Staphylococcus sciuri and Paenibacillus spp., each with a frequency of 16.1 %.

CONCLUSION:

Overall, the gut of the naked mole-rat is colonized by diverse, but low numbers of cultivable microbes compared with humans and mice. The primary food plants of the rodents are rich in polyphenols and related compounds, possessing anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative as well as anti-cancer activity which may contribute to their exceptionally healthy life.

KEYWORDS:

Diet; Microbiota; Naked mole-rat; Polyphenols

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