Gut bacteria might increase obesity risk in adults

ANI| Last Updated: Aug 15, 2014, 14:23 PM IST

Washington: A new study has suggested that microbes found in the gut might cause metabolic changes that increase the risk of obesity in adulthood.

Senior study author Martin Blaser of the NYU Langone Medical Center said that they identified infancy as a critical window where host metabolism was especially vulnerable to microbiota disruption with antibiotics and this highlighted a need for cautious use of antibiotics in clinical practice in early life.

The study demonstrated that earlier penicillin exposure led to more substantial obesity in adulthood and worse metabolic health, especially in males and early exposure to antibiotics also reduced levels of several types of potentially protective bacteria and exacerbated the effects of a high-fat diet on obesity.

Lead study author Laura Cox of the NYU Langone Medical Center said that their findings implied that restoring good bacteria could prevent the long-term metabolic effects of early antibiotic exposure.

The study is published in the journal Cell.