Influence of Camembert consumption on the composition and metabolism of intestinal microbiota: a study in human microbiota-associated rats.
ABSTRACT The objective of the present study was to evaluate the consequence of Camembert consumption on the composition and metabolism of human intestinal microbiota. Camembert cheese was compared with milk fermented by yoghurt starters and Lactobacillus casei as a probiotic reference. The experimental model was the human microbiota-associated (HM) rat. HM rats were fed a basal diet (HMB group), a diet containing Camembert made from pasteurised milk (HMCp group) or a diet containing fermented milk (HMfm group). The level of micro-organisms from dairy products was measured in faeces using cultures on a specific medium and PCR-temporal temperature gradient gel electrophoresis. The metabolic characteristics of the caecal microbiota were also studied: SCFA, NH3, glycosidase and reductase activities, and bile acid degradations. The results showed that micro-organisms from cheese comprised 10(5)-10(8) bacteria/g faecal sample in the HMCp group. Lactobacillus species from fermented milk were detected in HMfm rats. Consumption of cheese and fermented milk led to similar changes in bacterial metabolism: a decrease in azoreductase activity and NH3 concentration and an increase in mucolytic activities. However, specific changes were observed: in HMCp rats, the proportion of ursodeoxycholic resulting from chenodeoxycholic epimerisation was higher; in HMfm rats, alpha and beta-galactosidases were higher than in other groups and both azoreductases and nitrate reductases were lower. The results show that, as for fermented milk, Camembert consumption did not greatly modify the microbiota profile or its major metabolic activities. Ingested micro-organisms were able to survive in part during intestinal transit. These dairy products exert a potentially beneficial influence on intestinal metabolism.