Project Title

Studying gut microbiota effects on the Drosophila host.

Academic department under which the project should be listed

CSM - Molecular and Cellular Biology

Faculty Sponsor Name

Anton Bryantsev

Additional Faculty

Melanie Griffin, Molecular and Cellular Biology, mgriff40@kennesaw.edu

Disciplines

Biology | Cell Biology | Microbiology

Abstract (300 words maximum)

Emerging evidence has indicated that the gut microbiota, a community of microorganisms living in the gastrointestinal tracts of humans and animals, can influence a host's health. Such impact plays a role in rising widespread health conditions such as type II diabetes and obesity.

This study aims to establish a traceable model to analyze the effects of the gut microbiota by utilizing the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster) as a host. First, we were able to create flies without microorganisms in their guts (axenic flies). While axenic flies can survive and reproduce normally as non-axenic flies, they exhibit a notable developmental delay that prolongs the larval and pupal stages of their life cycle.

Next, we restored the normal developmental rate of axenic flies by employing probiotic bacteria. We have isolated two bacterial strains from yogurt for these experiments, identified as Lactobacillus paracasei ss paracasei and Lactobacillus casei. Gnotobiotic flies inoculated with either of these bacteria developed significantly faster than axenic flies.

Our study underscores that the gut microbiota has a measurable effect on the host and demonstrates that these effects can be species-specific. Our future goals intend to apply this model to investigate the effects of the gut microbiota on metabolically impaired fly mutants to identify microbiota-sensitive genetic mutations.

Project Type

Oral Presentation (15-min time slots)

How will this be presented?

Yes, in person

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Studying gut microbiota effects on the Drosophila host.

Emerging evidence has indicated that the gut microbiota, a community of microorganisms living in the gastrointestinal tracts of humans and animals, can influence a host's health. Such impact plays a role in rising widespread health conditions such as type II diabetes and obesity.

This study aims to establish a traceable model to analyze the effects of the gut microbiota by utilizing the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster) as a host. First, we were able to create flies without microorganisms in their guts (axenic flies). While axenic flies can survive and reproduce normally as non-axenic flies, they exhibit a notable developmental delay that prolongs the larval and pupal stages of their life cycle.

Next, we restored the normal developmental rate of axenic flies by employing probiotic bacteria. We have isolated two bacterial strains from yogurt for these experiments, identified as Lactobacillus paracasei ss paracasei and Lactobacillus casei. Gnotobiotic flies inoculated with either of these bacteria developed significantly faster than axenic flies.

Our study underscores that the gut microbiota has a measurable effect on the host and demonstrates that these effects can be species-specific. Our future goals intend to apply this model to investigate the effects of the gut microbiota on metabolically impaired fly mutants to identify microbiota-sensitive genetic mutations.

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