Microbiome of research animals

Mar 21, 2018 9:30 AM–10:30 AM (EST)
Duration: 1hrs
The human gut microbiota (GM) has emerged as a key factor in susceptibility to, as well as a potential biomarker of, several diseases and conditions. Similarly, researchers now appreciate that the GM of laboratory animals could affect the reproducibility and translatability of many disease models, including a complete loss of phenotype. While associations between characteristics of the GM and differential disease model phenotypes are of concern, they can also be viewed as sources of discovery related to disease pathogenesis. As such, there is considerable interest in factors that inadvertently influence the composition of the GM and methods of manipulating the GM prospectively to investigate such associations and standardize or optimize disease models. The webinar will present data on variables capable of influencing the GM of laboratory rodents citing several examples and animal models, considerations related to manipulation of the GM in mice and rats, and recent data supporting the use of “dirty” mice in biomedical research.

Dr. Aaron Ericsson

Aaron Ericsson is Director of the University of Missouri Metagenomics Center and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology at the University of Missouri. He is also a Co-I on the University of Missouri Mutant Mouse Resource and Research Center and Rat Resource and Research Center and serves as lead scientist for microbiome research for both of these NIH-funded Centers.  His research program comprises several different projects including a K01-funded study investigating the influence of different complex gut microbial profiles and specific taxa on host susceptibility to colorectal cancer, studies investigating the influence of reducing (or electron-donating) microbes in the gut and their influence on the development of the immune system, and studies on the respiratory microbiome during acute and chronic inflammatory conditions.  He has published extensively on host-associated microbial communities in the gut and other tissues in myriad host species including rodents, dogs, cats, cattle, horses, zebrafish, and zoo species.