2020 Volume 39 Issue 1 Pages 11-17
In recent years, short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) have been reported to play an important role in maintaining human health. Fecal SCFA concentrations correlate well with colonic SCFA status and gut microbiota composition. However, the associations with the gut microbiota functional pathway, dietary intake, blood SCFAs, and fecal SCFAs remain uncertain. To clarify these relationships, we collected fecal samples, blood samples, and dietary habit data from 12 healthy adults aged 22–51 years. The relative abundance of several SCFA-producing bacteria, gut microbiota diversity, and functional pathways related to SCFA biosynthesis were positively associated with fecal SCFAs even after adjusting for age and sex. Furthermore, fecal acetate was likely to be positively associated with serum acetate. By contrast, dietary intake was not associated with fecal SCFAs. Overall, the present study highlights the potential usefulness of fecal SCFAs as an indicator of the gut microbiota ecosystem and dynamics of SCFAs in the human body.