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On March 9, an international team, led by Zhao Liping, professor in School of Life Sciences and Biotechnology, published online in Nature its latest findings, titled "Gut bacteria selectively promoted by dietary fibers alleviate type 2 diabetes." The research finds that diverse and abundant dietary fibers can promote some beneficial gut microbes in gut ecosystem, which alleviates type 2 diabetes clinical phenotypes.

The research puts forward that the ecological theory of guild benefits the identification of the effect of gut microbiome members in human health and disease. Compared with conventional taxon-based analysis, such guild-based analysis offers a more ecological relevant way to reduce the dimensionality of microbiome data sets and facilitates the identification of functionally important members of gut microbiota in human health and disease. Restoring or enhancing the lost or deficient function by reestablishing the functionally active ecological populations as ecosystem service providers (ESPs) is the key to a healthier microbiota, which can help alleviate disease phenotypes. The study offers a novel path and analytical method in studying the relationship between gut microbes and chronic metabolic disease. In addition, targeted promotion of critical gut microbes as ESPs via personalized nutrition may present a novel ecological approach for manipulating the  gut microbiota to manage type 2 diabetes and potentially other dysbiosis-related diseases.

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