Prof. Dr. Lisa Maier

SysBio-Talk of Prof. Dr. Lisa Maier - May 15th 2024

April 30, 2024

10:00 CET - Allmandring 31 Lecture Hall 0.106

Drug-microbiome interactions and their consequences on the host

The functionality of the gut microbiome is closely linked to a
number of environmental factors that influence the microbiome
composition. Among these factors, drugs are the most important
contributors to inter-individual differences in gut microbiome
signatures. Importantly, not only antibiotics, but also non-antibiotic
drugs affect the gut microbiome composition. However, it is still
unclear whether these drug-microbiome interactions influence the
therapeutic efficacy of the drug or lead to individual side effects.
Based on our finding that enteropathogens are more resistant to
non-antibiotic drugs than commensal gut microbes, we
hypothesised that non-antibiotics alter the microbiome in ways
that create opportunities for enteropathogens to thrive.
Consequently, the consumption of non-antibiotic drugs could
support the colonisation of bacterial pathogens. By combining
advanced high-throughput cultivation methods for anaerobic gut
bacteria with gnotobiotic and conventional animal models, we
have identified drugs from different therapeutic classes that
effectively promote colonisation with pathogenic
Gammaproteobacteria. Particularly in immunocompromised hosts,
such a drug-induced increase in pathogen load implies an
increased risk of infection.
In the long term, a comprehensive understanding of the
interactions between drugs and the gut microbiome promises to
improve the efficacy of current therapies and guide the
development of new drugs with reduced side effects.

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