In detail

Bruxelles Woluwe


The main research activities performed upon the last five years were devoted:

  1. to develop experimental models mimicking metabolic disturbances occurring upon obesity and cancer development
  2. to test for the implication of gut microbiota in the occurrence of those metabolic disorders.
  3. to investigate the role of the endocannabinoid system and of specific receptors responding to gut microbial components or metabolites
  4. to decipher the role of the innate immune system in the development of obesity, inflammation, insulin resistance, oxidative stress, type 2 diabetes, hepatic steatosis and cancer cachexia in mice.
  5. to evaluate the involvement of key gut functions (endocrine, immune, endothelial, barrier functions) alterations in the occurrence of behavioural and metabolic disorders.
  6. to explore the potential links between oxidative stress, inflammation and cancer cell metabolism.

These alterations are mainly dependent on the gut microbiota and specific bacterial derived compounds such as pathogen associated molecular patterns (PAMPs). Among them, we have identified the key role played by the lipopolysaccharides (LPS) in the onset of metabolic inflammation and glucose homeostasis disorders in the context of obesity and associated disorders, as well as in the inflammation linked to alcohol dependence in humans. The alteration of the gut barrier is one important cause of the translocation of bacterial elements (LPS, peptidoglycans..) which promotes inflammation and metabolic disorders occurring in nutritional or behavioural disorders (diabetes and obesity, cancer cachexia, alcohol dependence…) (For review, Delzenne et al, Diabetologia 2015; Cani and Everard, Molecular Nutrition Food Research 2016; Bindels et al, Clin Nutr Exp 2016)