Reference Number: 317
Variations in selenium (Se) intake have been reported to affect the barrier function and immune responses in the gut. Previous studies mainly focused on the role of Se itself or its metabolites, while the influences of the Se-intake-related microbiota on gut health were not thoroughly studied. This study compared the effects of different dietary Se supplementation (Se-deficient, Se-adequate, and Se-supranutritional) on the gut microbiota of mice. Fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) was further conducted to bypass the effect of Se itself and provided direct evidence that the effects of dietary Se supplementation on the intestinal barrier and immune responses are associated with its modulation of the gut microbiota. Deficient Se supplementation can result in a phenotype of gut microbiota that is more susceptible to dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis and Salmonella typhimurium infection. Sufficient or supranutritional Se intake can optimize the gut microbiota for protection against these intestinal dysfunctions.
What does this mean for a Baker?
While this study has no practical applications to baking, it is still a very interesting study which promotes the use of selenium supplements alongside a healthy diet. This study found that taking selenium supplements may help to increase the diversity of our gut microbiome by altering it’s composition. The increased diversity of our gut microbiome may also help to regulate the action of the immune system and offer some protection against certain intestinal infections.