Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Massey research improves gut permeability test

Massey research improves gut permeability test

Caption: Professor Roger Lentle and doctoral researcher Ivana Sequeira

It may be a simple test – drink sugary water, pee and wait for the results. But a Massey nutrition researcher’s innovative experimental work to refine and improve the accuracy of the test – widely used by doctors to monitor people with chronic bowel conditions – has earned her international recognition.

College of Health doctoral student Ivana Sequeira measured the human gut’s permeability to tracer sugars during a three-year study.

Her research at Massey’s Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health will mean a significant improvement in accuracy when assessing changes in gut permeability in illnesses such as Chrohn’s, Coeliac and Inflammatory Bowel diseases. About 15,000 people in New Zealand are affected by inflammatory bowel disease, according to the Ministry of Health.

Her work has been praised in the reputable Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology journal, which published her research. In a rare editorial piece, titled Sweet transition from clinical to basic physiology, editor Dr Klaus Michel says Ms Sequeira’s research is good example of scientific studies that are “paving the way for valuable improvements of existing methods to benefit patients and clinicians.”

Gut permeability determines what nutrients the body absorbs, and is crucial for overall health. Permeability, and the cells that control it, can be disturbed by harmful bacteria which prevents optimum nutrient absorption and can lead to immune dysfunction and disease, says Roger Lentle, a professor of digestive biomechanics who supervised the research.

“The existing clinical tests of gut permeability are fairly crude and may not be sufficiently sensitive to identify the early stages of relapse, or to identify which section of the bowel is involved, “ he says.

Ms Sequiera measured the rate at which two harmless sugar probes (mannitol and lactulose) were absorbed to track permeability in the small and large intestine. To check whether the modified test would pick up subtle changes in permeability she repeated it after each subject had taken a single dose of aspirin, used to mimic a slight inflammatory effect. She found that the test could identify a significant increase in the permeability in the small but not the large intestine.

She subsequently conducted a further study to check her results simultaneously dosing her subjects with the tracer sugars and a ‘smart pill’ – a radio transmitter pill that gave signals that enabled the researchers to tell whether it was in the small or the large intestine.

“This research puts New Zealand on the map internationally in terms of cutting edge clinical science,” says Professor Lentle. He says the modified test could also be used to test the effects of a range of foods and food supplements on gut permeability, and to relate these to conditions such as obesity.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Scoop Business: NZ Dollar Catches Breath After "Goldilocks" Slump

The New Zealand dollar edged up following its dramatic slump yesterday after the Reserve Bank confirmed speculation it intervened in the currency market last month and PM John Key suggested a “Goldilocks” level far lower than at present. More>>

ALSO:

Biosecurity: Kiwifruit Claim To Hold Officials Accountable For Psa

Kiwifruit growers have joined forces to hold Biosecurity NZ accountable in the courts for its negligence in allowing 2010’s Psa outbreak that devastated New Zealand’s kiwifruit industry and exports. Foundation claimants representing well ... More>>

ALSO:

Poison: Anglers Advised Not To Eat Trout In 1080 Areas

With the fishing season opening in just a few days (1 October 2014), anglers are being warned by the Department of Conservation(DOC) not to eat trout from pristine backcountry waters and their downstream catchments, where the department is conducting 1080 poisoning operations. More>>.

ALSO:

Quotas: MPI Swoop On Suspected Fraudulent Fishing Activity

Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) compliance officers swooped on a Hawkes Bay fishing enterprise today to secure evidence in an investigation into suspected fraudulent activity... “The investigation involves activity throughout the commercial supply chain – catching, landing, processing and exporting.” More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Fonterra Slashes 2015 Milk Payout, Earnings Tumble 76%

Fonterra Cooperative Group cut its forecast 2015 milk price payout by about 12 percent, citing weaker global dairy prices and said there is a risk of further declines given strong global milk production. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: RBNZ Keeps OCR At 3.5%, Signals Slower Pace Of Future Hikes

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 3.5 percent and signalled he won’t be as aggressive with future rate hikes as previously thought as inflation remains tamer than expected. The kiwi dollar fell to a seven-month low. More>>

ALSO:

Weather: Dry Spells Take Hold In South Island

Many areas in the South Island are tracking towards record dry spells as relatively warm, dry weather that began in mid-August continues... for some South Island places, the current period of fine weather is quite rare. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand

Mosh Social Media
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news