Microbial Reconstitution Reverses Maternal Diet-Induced Social and Synaptic Deficits in Offspring

Shelly Buffington, Gonzalo Viana Di Prisco, Thomas A. Auchtung, Nadim J. Ajami, Joseph F. Petrosino, Mauro Costa-Mattioli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

316 Scopus citations

Abstract

Maternal obesity during pregnancy has been associated with increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD), in offspring. Here, we report that maternal high-fat diet (MHFD) induces a shift in microbial ecology that negatively impacts offspring social behavior. Social deficits and gut microbiota dysbiosis in MHFD offspring are prevented by co-housing with offspring of mothers on a regular diet (MRD) and transferable to germ-free mice. In addition, social interaction induces synaptic potentiation (LTP) in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) of MRD, but not MHFD offspring. Moreover, MHFD offspring had fewer oxytocin immunoreactive neurons in the hypothalamus. Using metagenomics and precision microbiota reconstitution, we identified a single commensal strain that corrects oxytocin levels, LTP, and social deficits in MHFD offspring. Our findings causally link maternal diet, gut microbial imbalance, VTA plasticity, and behavior and suggest that probiotic treatment may relieve specific behavioral abnormalities associated with neurodevelopmental disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1762-1775
Number of pages14
JournalCell
Volume165
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 16 2016
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • autism
  • dysbiosis
  • high-fat diet (HFD)
  • long-term potentiation (LTP)
  • neurodevelopmental disorders
  • probiotic
  • ventral tegmental area (VTA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Microbial Reconstitution Reverses Maternal Diet-Induced Social and Synaptic Deficits in Offspring'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Buffington, S., Di Prisco, G. V., Auchtung, T. A., Ajami, N. J., Petrosino, J. F., & Costa-Mattioli, M. (2016). Microbial Reconstitution Reverses Maternal Diet-Induced Social and Synaptic Deficits in Offspring. Cell, 165(7), 1762-1775. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2016.06.001