Meet the Winners of the 2020 Best Article Award From FEMS Microbiology Letters

27-01-21 cameronw1986

Lorenzo Nissen, Flavia Casciano, and Prof. Andrea Gianotti from DiSTAL, University of Bologna (Italy) (@micode_lab #Unibo # Distal) are the winners of the 2020 best article award from FEMS Microbiology Letters. Their winning MiniReview paper is titled Intestinal fermentation in vitro models to study food-induced gut microbiota shift: an updated review.

We interviewed Lorenzo, Flavia and Prof Andrea to find out more about the paper and their answers can be found bellow.


Could you provide a brief, simple overview of the topic your paper covers?

Prof Andrea Gianotti (left), Flavia Casciano (middle) and Lorenzo Nissen (right)

 Our paper is covering the origin and evolution of research applied to in vitro intestinal models, presenting the main established and scientifically recognized models and their setting versions, encompassing the complexity and in vivo resemblance, as well as the standardization and reproducibility of research outputs, and critically assessing the pros and cons.”


How important are in vitro models to study the gut microbiota and why?

 These tools are essential to understand some mechanisms influencing the faith of bioactive compounds in foods or in food supplements, e.g. prebiotics and fibers, once are fermented by intestinal bacteria, as well to know how these products impact on gut microbiota and on the host.”


What encouraged you to review research this area of microbiology?

Intestinal in vitro models to study changes in the composition and metabolism of the gut microbiota in response to the diet.

 Clinical trial is the correct approach to understand the effect of diet on gut ecosystem and consequently on health. However, clinical trials are time and cost demanding. Animal trials are somehow not resembling in vivo human digestion capabilities. Otherwise, traditional in vitro microbiology and applied molecular biology are limited to elucidate intestinal digestion. In vitro gut models represent the finest way to rapidly study digestion and fermentation of foods, once are supported by omics applications, as the study of the colonic microbial volatilome and genomics of the colon microbiota.”


What do you see as the next steps in this area of research?

A possible extension of gut model towards more complex systems suitable to include host interactions based on co-culturing with intestinal cells, both epithelial and immune cells lines, could point the next level of research with in vitro gut models.”


Read the 2020 award winning paper: Intestinal fermentation in vitro models to study food-induced gut microbiota shift: an updated review

See more FEMS Journals Article Awards


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