Cigarette smoke decreases organic acids levels and population of bifidobacterium in the caecum of rats

J Toxicol Sci. 2011 Jun;36(3):261-6. doi: 10.2131/jts.36.261.


Cigarette smoke has been known to affect the development of bowel disease. However it has not been fully elucidated how cigarette smoke has effects on the gut. In this context we evaluated not only caecal levels of organic acids but also populations of micro-flora and pH in caecal contents after exposing rats (n=5) to cigarette smoke for a 4-week in order to investigate whether the gut environment is altered by cigarette smoke or not. After the exposure of cigarette smoke, caecal levels of organic acids such as acetic acid, propionic acid, butyric acid and valeric acid significantly decreased. Additionally the population of Bifidobacterium significantly decreased and the pH significantly elevated. In conclusion cigarette smoke changes caecal levels of certain organic acids, the population of Bifidobacterium and the pH in caecal contents of rats. These results suggest that cigarette smoke may alter the gut environment of rats.

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid / metabolism
  • Acids, Acyclic / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Bifidobacterium / drug effects*
  • Bifidobacterium / isolation & purification
  • Bifidobacterium / physiology
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Butyric Acid / metabolism
  • Cecum / drug effects*
  • Cecum / microbiology*
  • Eating / drug effects
  • Feces / microbiology
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Male
  • Pentanoic Acids / metabolism
  • Propionates / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Smoke / adverse effects*


  • Acids, Acyclic
  • Pentanoic Acids
  • Propionates
  • Smoke
  • Butyric Acid
  • n-pentanoic acid
  • propionic acid
  • Acetic Acid