Small molecule inhibition of gut microbial choline trimethylamine lyase activity alters host cholesterol and bile acid metabolism

Preeti Pathak, Robert N. Helsley, Amanda L. Brown, Jennifer A. Buffa, Ibrahim Choucair, Ina Nemet, Camelia Baleanu Gogonea, Valentin Gogonea, Zeneng Wang, Jose Carlos Garcia-Garcia, Lei Cai, Ryan Temel, Naseer Sangwan, Stanley L. Hazen, J. Mark Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations

Abstract

Small molecule inhibition of gut microbial choline trimethylamine lyase activity alters host cholesterol and bile acid metabolism. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 318: H1474-H1486, 2020. First published April 24, 2020; doi:10.1152/ajpheart.00584.2019.-The gut microbe-derived metabolite trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) has recently been linked to cardiovascular disease (CVD) pathogenesis, prompting the development of therapeutic strategies to reduce TMAO. Previous work has shown that experimental alteration of circulating TMAO levels via dietary alterations or inhibition of the host TMAO producing enzyme flavin containing monooxygenase 3 (FMO3) is associated with reorganization of host cholesterol and bile acid metabolism in mice. In this work, we set out to understand whether recently developed nonlethal gut microbe-Targeting small molecule choline trimethylamine (TMA) lyase inhibitors also alter host cholesterol and bile acid metabolism. Treatment of mice with the mechanism-based choline TMA lyase inhibitor, iodomethylcholine (IMC), increased fecal neutral sterol loss in the form of coprostanol, a bacteria metabolite of cholesterol. In parallel, IMC treatment resulted in marked reductions in the intestinal sterol transporter Niemann-pick C1-like 1 (NPC1L1) and reorganization of the gut microbial community, primarily reversing choline supplemented diet-induced changes. IMC also prevented diet-driven hepatic cholesterol accumulation, causing both upregulation of the host hepatic bile acid synthetic enzyme CYP7A1 and altering the expression of hepatic genes critical for bile acid feedback regulation. These studies suggest that the gut microbiota-driven TMAO pathway is closely linked to both microbe and host sterol and bile acid metabolism. Collectively, as gut microbe-Targeting choline TMA lyase inhibitors move through the drug discovery pipeline from preclinical models to human studies, it will be important to understand how these drugs impact both microbe and host cholesterol and bile acid metabolism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)H1474-H1486
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Volume318
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 American Physiological Society. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • TMA
  • bile acid
  • cardiovascular disease
  • cholesterol
  • metabolism
  • microbiome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)

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