Causes and Consequences of our Microbial Differences

Tuesday, March 29, 2016 -
4:00pm to 5:00pm
Biotechnology Center Auditorium, 425 Henry Mall

Speaker Name: 

Federico Rey

Speaker Institution: 

Assistant professor, Department of Bacteriology, UW-Madison




We live in a symbiotic relationship with trillions of microbes, most of which reside in our intestines. The environmental and genetic factors that drive colonization and persistence of each of these microbial species remain largely unknown. We are characterizing a large cohort of humans with well-defined life histories and a genetically diverse cohort of mice to dissect the factors that modulate who colonizes our gut and thereby create in each of us a unique microbiota. We are also investigating the functional consequences of our microbial differences as they relate to cardiometabolic disease. We are using gnotobiotic mice, harboring defined human gut microbial communities, housed in a highly-controlled environment, fed diets of defined composition, combined with next-generation sequencing technologies, metabolomics, and anaerobic microbiology to study how different microbial communities impact nutrient metabolism and health as a function of host diet and genotype. I will illustrate our approaches focusing on our recent studies aimed at defining the interrelationships between dietary choline, the gut microbiota and cardiometabolic disease