Diabetes-associated microbiota in fa/fa rats is modified by Roux-en-Y gastric bypass

Type Article

Journal Article


T. Arora; F. Seyfried; N. G. Docherty; V. Tremaroli; C. W. le Roux; R. Perkins; F. Bäckhed

Year of publication



Isme j








Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and duodenal jejunal bypass (DJB), two different forms of bariatric surgery, are associated with improved glucose tolerance, but it is not clear whether the gut microbiota contributes to this effect. Here we used fa/fa rats as a model of impaired glucose tolerance to investigate whether (i) the microbiota varies between fa/fa and nondiabetic fa/+ rats; (ii) the microbiota of fa/fa rats is affected by RYGB and/or DJB; and (iii) surgically induced microbiota alterations contribute to glucose metabolism. We observed a profound expansion of Firmicutes (specifically, Lactobacillus animalis and Lactobacillus reuteri) in the small intestine of diabetic fa/fa compared with nondiabetic fa/+ rats. RYGB-, but not DJB-, treated fa/fa rats exhibited greater microbiota diversity in the ileum and lower L. animalis and L. reuteri abundance compared with sham-operated fa/fa rats in all intestinal segments, and their microbiota composition resembled that of unoperated fa/+ rats. To investigate the functional role of RYGB-associated microbiota alterations, we transferred microbiota from sham- and RYGB-treated fa/fa rats to germ-free mice. The metabolic phenotype of RYGB-treated rats was not transferred by the transplant of ileal microbiota. In contrast, postprandial peak glucose levels were lower in mice that received cecal microbiota from RYGB- versus sham-operated rats. Thus, diabetes-associated microbiota alterations in fa/fa rats can be modified by RYGB, and modifications in the cecal microbiota may partially contribute to improved glucose tolerance after RYGB.