Breastfeeding profoundly shapes the infant gut microbiota, which is critical for early life immune development. However, few breastmilk-dependent microbial metabolites mediating host-microbiota interactions are currently known. We here demonstrate that breastmilk-promoted Bifidobacterium species convert aromatic amino acids (tryptophan, phenylalanine and tyrosine) into their respective aromatic lactic acids (indolelactate, phenyllactate and 4-hydroxyphenyllactate) via a previously unrecognised aromatic lactate dehydrogenase. By longitudinal profiling of the gut microbiota composition and metabolome of stool samples of infants obtained from birth until 6 months of age, we show that stool concentrations of aromatic lactic acids is determined by the abundance of human milk oligosaccharide degrading Bifidobacterium species containing the aromatic lactate dehydrogenase. Finally, we demonstrate that stool concentrations of Bifidobacterium-derived indolelactate are associated with the capacity of infant stool samples to activate the aryl hydrocarbon receptor, a receptor important for maintenance of intestinal homeostasis and immune system development. These findings open up new directions towards understanding the role of breastmilk-promoted Bifidobacterium in mediating host-microbiota interactions in early life.
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Date of publication: 22 January 2020; Biorxiv
Author information: Martin F. Laursen (1); Mikiyasu Sakanaka (1,2); Nicole von Burg (3); Daniel Andersen (4); Urs Mörbe (3); Aymeric Rivollier (3); Ceyda T. Pekmez (5); Janne Marie Moll (4); Kim F. Michaelsen (5); Christian Mølgaard (5); Mads Vendelbo Lind (5); Lars O. Dragsted (5); Takane Katayama (2,6); Henrik L. Frandsen (1); Anne Marie Vinggaardi (1); Martin I. Bahl (1); Susanne Brix (4); William Agace (3); Tine R. Licht (1); & Henrik M. Roager (1,5)
(1) National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
(2) Faculty of Bioresources and Environmental Sciences, Ishikawa Prefectural University, Ishikawa 921-8836, Japan
(3) Department of Health Technology, Technical University of Denmark, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
(4) Department of Biotechnology and Biomedicine, Technical University of Denmark, Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
(5) Department of Nutrition, Exercise, and Sports, University of Copenhagen, Frederiksberg C, Denmark
(6) Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto Univerisity, Kyoto 606-8502, Japan