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NPJ Biofilms Microbiomes. 2016 Jul 6;2:16009. doi: 10.1038/npjbiofilms.2016.9. eCollection 2016.

Oral treatment with Eubacterium hallii improves insulin sensitivity in db/db mice.

Author information

Department of Vascular Medicine, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Wallenberg Laboratory, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Laboratory of Microbiology, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Microbiology Group, Rowett Institute for Nutrition and Health, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK.
Department of Pediatrics, Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Groningen, The Netherlands.
Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research, Section for Metabolic Receptology and Enteroendocrinology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
RPU Immunobiology, Department of Bacteriology and Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland.
Diabetes Center, Department of Internal medicine, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
ICAR, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


An altered intestinal microbiota composition is associated with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus. We previously identified increased intestinal levels of Eubacterium hallii, an anaerobic bacterium belonging to the butyrate-producing Lachnospiraceae family, in metabolic syndrome subjects who received a faecal transplant from a lean donor. To further assess the effects of E. hallii on insulin sensitivity, we orally treated obese and diabetic db/db mice with alive E. hallii and glycerol or heat-inactive E. hallii as control. Insulin tolerance tests and hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp experiments revealed that alive E. hallii treatment improved insulin sensitivity compared control treatment. In addition, E. hallii treatment increased energy expenditure in db/db mice. Active E. hallii treatment was found to increase faecal butyrate concentrations and to modify bile acid metabolism compared with heat-inactivated controls. Our data suggest that E. hallii administration potentially alters the function of the intestinal microbiome and that microbial metabolites may contribute to the improved metabolic phenotype.

Conflict of interest statement

M.N. and W.M.d.V. are founders, own equity and are in the Scientific Advisory Board of Caelus Pharmaceuticals, The Netherlands; M.N. is in the Scientific Advisory Board of Seres Health, Boston USA; W.M.d.V. is in the Scientific Advisory Board of Chr Hansen Horsholm Danmark and the Nestle Institute for Health Science (NIHS) Lausanne Switzerland. F.B. is a founder of and owns equity in MetaboGen AB, Sweden. The remaining authors declare no conflict of interest.

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