Fecal microbiome transplantation and tributyrin improves early cardiac dysfunction and modifies the BCAA metabolic pathway in a diet induced pre-HFpEF mouse model

Front Cardiovasc Med. 2023 Feb 8:10:1105581. doi: 10.3389/fcvm.2023.1105581. eCollection 2023.


More than 50% of patients with heart failure present with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), and 80% of them are overweight or obese. In this study we developed an obesity associated pre-HFpEF mouse model and showed an improvement in both systolic and diastolic early dysfunction following fecal microbiome transplant (FMT). Our study suggests that the gut microbiome-derived short-chain fatty acid butyrate plays a significant role in this improvement. Cardiac RNAseq analysis showed butyrate to significantly upregulate ppm1k gene that encodes protein phosphatase 2Cm (PP2Cm) which dephosphorylates and activates branched-chain α-keto acid dehydrogenase (BCKDH) enzyme, and in turn increases the catabolism of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs). Following both FMT and butyrate treatment, the level of inactive p-BCKDH in the heart was reduced. These findings show that gut microbiome modulation can alleviate early cardiac mechanics dysfunction seen in the development of obesity associated HFpEF.

Keywords: branched chain amino acids (BCAAs); gut microbiome; heart failure with preserved ejection fraction; obesity; short chain fatty acids.