The composition of the intestinal flora (intestinal microbiome) can influence prostate health. The short-chain fatty acids produced by intestinal bacteria are also linked to prostate inflammation and benign prostatic hyperplasia.
A recent study investigated possible associations between diagnostic lipid parameters for metabolic syndrome, short-chain fatty acids produced by intestinal bacteria, and immunoexpression of interleukins in prostate tissue with benign hyperplasia. The results are published in the specialist magazine “Aging”.
Intestinal flora influences health
Numerous studies have proven that the diversity of microorganisms in our intestines has a significant impact on our health and can even influence our brain and behavior via the gut-brain axis.
Effects on prostate health have already been suspected and in 2021 a study established a connection between intestinal flora and the risk of prostate cancer for the first time.
Other studies have also suggested that inflammation, which is influenced by previous infections, metabolic disorders and the state of the intestinal microbiome, can be the cause of the development of benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlargement of the prostate), report the authors of the new research.
Connections with prostatic hyperplasia
The Polish research team therefore analyzed in 103 men with benign prostatic hyperplasia the extent to which there is a connection between the enlarged prostate, certain inflammatory markers (interleukin-6 and interleukin-18; IL-6 and IL-18), the metabolic syndrome and short-chain fatty acids produced by the Intestinal bacteria are produced.
The participants were divided into two groups depending on whether metabolic syndrome was present or not.
Inflammatory markers significantly influenced
The team was able to demonstrate that men with prostatic hyperplasia and metabolic syndrome had a significantly higher overall proportion of cells with IL-6 expression in the prostate than men without metabolic syndrome.
In addition, a significantly higher percentage of cells with strong IL-18 expression was found in the men with metabolic syndrome and a connection between the tissue expression of IL-6 and IL-18 and certain lipid parameters could be established, the team reports.
Effects on inflammation
“We conclude that lipid disorders occurring in men with benign prostatic hyperplasia increase inflammation in the prostate. “In addition, it has been shown for the first time that the gut microbiota can indirectly help prevent or create an inflammatory microenvironment in the prostate via short-chain fatty acids,” the research team concluded. (fp)