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Impact of metformin and Dysosmobacter welbionis on diet‑induced obesity and diabetes: from clinical observation to preclinical intervention – published online 28/10/2023

Moens de Hase graphical abstract

Emilie Moens de Hase, Audrey M. Neyrinck, Julie Rodriguez, Miriam Cnop, Nicolas Paquot, Jean‑Paul Thissen, Yining Xu, Ana Beloqui, Laure B. Bindels, Nathalie M. Delzenne, Matthias Van Hul, Patrice D. Cani

Dysosmobacter welbionis is a commensal intestinal bacterium, the abundance of which is inversely associated with HbA1c in individuals with obesity and type 2 diabetes. In this issue, Moens de Hase et al (https://doi.org/10.1007/s00125-023-06032-0) report that individuals who respond positively to prebiotic treatment, marked by a reduction in BMI after 3 months of intervention, had higher levels of D. welbionis at baseline compared with non-responders. Furthermore, participants treated with metformin exhibited significantly increased levels of this bacterium, while it was inversely linked to fasting blood glucose levels. The authors also show that, mechanistically, D. welbionis appeared to boost the secretion of key hormones, like glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) and peptide YY (PYY). In mice, D. welbionis treatment not only curtailed weight gain and improved glucose tolerance but also outperformed metformin. The authors conclude that these findings hint at the pivotal role that D. welbionis might play in shaping our metabolic health, with the evidence suggesting that the abundance of D. welbionis is influenced by metformin treatment and associated with prebiotic response and glucose metabolism in individuals with obesity and diabetes. They conclude that their findings may have implications for the development of personalised approaches for the treatment of obesity and diabetes.

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