PhD Defence by Monica Tulstrup "Influence of Antibiotics on Gut Microbiota, Development and Health"
On Thursday 20 April 2023, Moncia Tulstrup will defend her PhD thesis "Influence of Antibiotics on Gut Microbiota, Development and Health".
- Prof. Tine Rask Licht
- Sr. Researcher Martin Iain Bahl
- Associate Prof. Håkan Vigre (DTU Food)
- Associate Prof. Kristine Allin (Aalborg University)
- Research Prof. Sarah Lebeer (Antwerpen University)
Chairperson at defence:
- Sr. Scientist Martin Steen Mortensen (DTU Food)
A copy of the PhD thesis is available for reading at the department
Antibiotics, through their effect on the gut microbiota, have been shown to influence host appetite and metabolism, affect behavior and have been linked to childhood obesity. While antibiotics play an essential role in clinical practice, it has become increasingly evident that their use is not without risks, especially during infancy. In this thesis, to study the influence of antibiotics on gut microbiota, development, and health, Wistar rats are used as an animal model and treated with antibiotics and the gut microbial communities are profiled and their effect on host health is analyzed.
The main findings were that antibiotics can directly or indirectly disrupt the gut barrier and that early-life exposure to an antibiotic- disturbed low-diversity microbiota is sufficient to cause changes in bodyweight persisting into adulthood. This is consistent with changes in feed intake among other alterations. Even after early life gut microbial changes disappear, permanent physical changes remain, indicative of “metabolic programming”.
The knowledge generated in this thesis may form the basis for future strategies to support healthy gut microbiota development and appropriate use of antibiotics in early life and during pregnancies.