Nutrition and Food Toxicology Editorial Effect of Food Additives on the Gut Microbiome in Relation to Human Health

Shangyun Lu, Tao Zuo
2018 unpublished
The interplay between the host and host-associated gut microbiota is an area of increasing interest during the recent decade and the fundamental roles of gut microbiome in human health is incrementally being recognized, though it still needs further in-depth understanding [1]. Accumulating evidence have confirmed the association between the dysbiosis of gut microbial composition and etiology of human metabolic, immunological, neurological diseases [2,3]. Gradually, the causal or consequential
more » ... or consequential relations of gut microbiota with various diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease [4], cancer [5,6], obesity [7,8], diabetes [9], cardiovascular disease [10,11], liver disease, neurodegenerative disorders and autism, are also being revealed [2]. Human gut microbiome composition is largely effected by the genotype and physiology of host [12], as well as many environmental factors associated with lifestyle and diet [13,14]. Particularly, diet could rapidly and reproducibly alter the human gut microbiome in microbial activity and gene expression [15]. Therefore, attempts were carried on targeting the diet-microbiota interaction as moderators of human metabolism [16]. Numbers of studies have also clarified the relationship between gut microbiota and different dietary interventions , such as the plant-based diet, animal-based diet, or western-style diet [15,17]. However, other ingredients in diet, like food additives, did not receive enough attention and are recently being unraveled [18-24], especially when considering their chronic effect on human health in low dosages. Food additives are synthetic or natural substances that are added to foods to improve food color, aroma and taste, and to meet the needs of preservation and processing technology. The potential effect of food additives on human health has been a long-standing concern , and recently is complicated given the intensive metabolic activities of gut microbes. Non-caloric artificial sweeteners (NAS) were introduced over a century ago as means for providing sweet taste to foods without the associated high energy content of caloric sugars, regularly consumed by lean and obese individuals alike [18]. Studies demonstrate that consumption of commonly used NAS formulations drives the development of glucose intolerance through induction of compositional and functional alterations to the intestinal micro biota [19]. The impact of dietary emulsifiers on the mouse gut micro biota was also conducted by Benoit Chasseing and his colleague [20,21]. Administration of the emulsifier's carboxyl methyl cellulose (CMC) and polysorbate-80 (P80) via drinking water promoted colitis and