Gut microbiota: a promising target against cardiometabolic diseases

Expert Rev Endocrinol Metab. 2020 Jan;15(1):13-27. doi: 10.1080/17446651.2020.1720511.


Introduction: Cardiometabolic diseases (CMD) are a group of interrelated disorders such as metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular diseases (CVD). As the prevalence of these diseases increases globally, efficient new strategies are necessary to target CMD and modifiable risk factors. In the past decade, evidence has accumulated regarding the influence of gut microbiota (GM) on CMD, providing new targets for therapeutic interventions.Areas covered: This narrative review discusses the pathophysiologic link between CMD, GM, and potential microbiota-based targets against atherosclerosis and modifiable risk factors for atherosclerosis. Low-grade inflammation can be induced through GM and its derived metabolites. CMD are influenced by GM and microbiota-derived metabolites such as short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), secondary bile acids, trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO), and the composition of GM can modulate host metabolism. All of the above can lead to promising therapeutic targets.Expert opinion: Most data are derived from animal models or human association studies; therefore, more translational and interventional research in humans is necessary to validate these promising findings. Reproduced findings such as aberrant microbiota patterns or circulating biomarkers could be targeted depending on individual metabolic profiles, moving toward personalized medicine in CMD.

Keywords: Gut microbiome; cardiovascular diseases; drug therapy; inflammation; metabolic diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / drug therapy
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / metabolism
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / microbiology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / pathology*
  • Drug Discovery*
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Metabolic Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Metabolic Syndrome / metabolism
  • Metabolic Syndrome / microbiology*
  • Metabolic Syndrome / pathology*
  • Metabolome / drug effects*