Alteration of gut microbiota composition by short-term low-dose alcohol intake is restored by fermented rice liquor in mice.


Research Group of Functional Food Materials, Korea Food Research Institute, Wanju, Republic of Korea. Electronic address: [Email]


Excessive alcohol consumption can increase gut permeability and alter the gut bacterial communities, influencing the pathogenesis of several disorders including alcoholic liver disease, endotoxemia, and systemic inflammation. Although recent studies have highlighted a pivotal role for gut microbiota in alcohol metabolism and alcoholic liver injury, the results have primarily been obtained from binge models treated with physiologically acute dose of alcohol. We sought to investigate the effect of low-dose (0.8 g/kg/day) and short-term (one week) consumption of alcohol on changes in gut microbiota composition in mice. The low-dose consumption of alcohol immediately altered fecal microbiota composition in mice after 1 and 7 days of treatment. We also evaluated the influence of alcoholic beverages containing various microbes using fermented rice liquors (FRLs, called Makgeolli in Korea) on gut microbiota and systemic inflammation. One week of FRLs consumption restored fecal microbiota compositions altered by alcohol administration in mice, with the abundance of Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes phyla recovered to levels of the control group. In addition, mice receiving FRLs exhibited increased fecal production of short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) such as butyric acid and propionic acid within 7 days, and reduced inflammatory responses induced by alcohol administration in the serum and colon. Taken together, these results suggest that short-term and low-dose alcohol intake induces alterations in fecal microbiota composition, and FRLs administration can restore microbial composition and suppress intestinal inflammation, highlighting potential benefits of FRLs as fermented foods.


Alcohol,Fermented rice liquor,Gut microbiota,Intestinal inflammation,Makgeolli,Nuruk,

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