The gut microbiome is a critical regulator in many of the body’s necessary functions, including degradation of nutrients and synthesis of vitamins. More recently, it has become clear that the gut microbiome also regulates bone metabolism. In 2018, a randomised controlled trial demonstrated that the probiotic supplement Lactobacillus reuteri reduced bone loss by half, compared to placebo, in older women in Sweden (Nilsson, Sundh, Backhed, & Lorentzon, 2018).
The Bone Health and Fractures Research Program will undertake a randomised controlled trial commencing in late 2020 to investigate the effect of two different interventions in altering the gut microbiome to improve bone health in postmenopausal women.
This project is the led by researchers at The Bone Health and Fractures Research Program, and involves collaborators at the University of Melbourne and Edith Cowan University. The one-year study will determine if investigational products affecting the intestinal levels of short chain fatty acids can improve bone metabolism in postmenopausal women.