Changes in the Gut Microbiota following Bariatric Surgery Are Associated with Increased Alcohol Intake in a Female Rat Model

Olivia A. Martin, Silvia Grant-Beurmann, Elise R. Orellana, Andras Hajnal, Claire M. Fraser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Aims: We aimed to investigate if differences in gut microbiota diversity and composition are associated with post-operative alcohol intake following bariatric surgery in a rat model. Methods: Twenty-four female rats were randomized to three treatment groups: sham surgery, vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) or Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB). Stool was collected pre- and post-operatively and 16S rRNA gene amplification and sequencing was performed. Analysis focused on correlating microbial diversity, type of surgery and alcohol (EtOH) intake. Results: Pre-operative stools samples on regular diet showed similar taxonomic composition and Shannon diversity among the three treatment groups. There was a significant decrease in Shannon diversity and a change in taxonomic composition of the gut microbiota after rats was fed high fat diet. Post-operatively, the RYGB group showed significantly lower taxonomic diversity than the VSG and sham groups, while the VSG and sham groups diversity were not significantly different. Taxonomic composition and function prediction based on PICRUSt analysis showed the RYGB group to be distinct from the VSG and sham groups. Shannon diversity was found to be negatively associated with EtOH intake. Conclusions: Changes in the taxonomic profile of the gut microbiota following bariatric surgery, particularly RYGB, are associated with increased EtOH intake and may contribute to increased alcohol use disorder risk through the gut-brain-microbiome axis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)605-613
Number of pages9
JournalAlcohol and Alcoholism
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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