The Evolution of Microbiome

Planet Earth is very unique in many ways, and gathering the conditions to host life makes it even more special as compared to other planets, not only in our solar system but also in other planetary systems from the Milky Way and other galaxies. According to NASA’s definition, there are three conditions for planetary habitability: the existence of complex organic compounds, liquid water, and a source of energy to sustain metabolism. Planets with the capabilities of harboring life thus need to be at a certain distance from the star they orbit around, so that the surface is neither too cold nor too hot to prevent water from constantly freezing or evaporating. The size of the planet is also important since that will determine the gravity to hold a viable atmosphere and will influence on the rotational speed to allow for alternation between day and night and therefore relatively well distributed energy (in the form of light and heat) along its surface. While, complex organic compounds may have come to the earth from extraterrestrial sources, as suggested from observations on comets and asteroids, theories propose that origins of life in the universe date from more than 10 billion years ago, with models advocating for a genes-first or metabolism-first categories or the more recent hybrid models. Microbial fossil remains in stromalites provide evidence that life on Earth started 3.7 billion years ago.

With only one cell, bacteria constitute some of the simplest and some of the most ancient organisms on Earth having short reproduction cycles varying from ten minutes to up to one day. Given the relatively simple DNA replication machinery with unsophisticated quality control and short reproduction times, microbes can evolve and adapt easily to environments with diverse nutrient sources, temperatures, acidity, or humidity. Throughout Earth’s history, life progressed from unicellular microorganisms to more complex multicellular species that integrate the kingdoms of fungi, plants, and animals, which provided newer and more diversified habitats for microbes to live and prosper. Besides soil, terrestrial and aquatic plants and animals host between thousands and millions (and even billions) of microbial species, depending on the environment. Specifically, the digestive systems of animals including worms, flies, birds, reptiles, and mammals (of course humans too) provide housing and food for the microorganisms that live therein. These microbes constitute a dynamic ecological system, each of them owning hundreds of genes that form part of a microbiome. For example, the human gut microbiome includes approximately 3 million genes, which is approximately 100 times the number of genes present in human cells. The constantly changing resources of the host (the food we eat) shape the size and composition of these guest communities. These guests are not necessarily enemies of the host, but are helpful and almost essential to the host’s health. As shown in worms, flies and humans, the microbiome is involved in the host’s growth, metabolism, immunity, and mood.

Microbial ancient DNA has been found in permafrost samples collected from several-hundred-thousand-year-old ice found at the bottom 20-meter layer of a 308-meter-deep glacier in Tibet, and in amber samples dating several hundred thousand years. The gut microbiome of ancient humans and animals was investigated in DNA samples extracted from coprolites (fossils of animal excrements) or paleofaeces (faeces from ancient species that were preserved by the specific environmental conditions where they remained). In particular, ancient microbial DNA was recovered from different archeological sources including the Rio Zape burial site in Mexico with samples dating 1400 years before present and the gut of “Ötzi the Iceman”, the 5000 year-old mummy (the oldest human mummy ever found) discovered in the Tyrolean Alps in 1991. The microbiome recovered from Rio Zape coprolites resembled in great part that of African rural populations with smaller resemblance to the primate non-human. Ötzi’s microbiome was similar to that of the primate gut. These results contrast the lifestyles and dietary habits of ancient and present day societies. Nowadays we live in a more cosmopolitan world with access to processed foods and antibiotics, which accounts for major differences in the microbiome as compared to rural and ancient communities. Whereas the use of antibiotics protects humans from diseases that were untreatable in the past, these remedies are not pathogen-specific and their use results in the loss of bacterial species that may have beneficial effects to the host. Evidence of the diet effect is suggested by the presence of the species Treponema in the 1400 year-old Rio Zape samples as well as in present day rural African samples, as opposed to cosmopolitan microbiomes. Treponema species (cousins with the syphilis-causing microbe) are believed to help the in the digestion of fibrous foods and therefore a shift towards processed diets results in a less appealing environment for such microbes in the modern society’s gut. On the contrary, the loss of microbial diversity due to consumption of processed food or the exposure of antibiotics may result in the increase of autoimmune disorders, such as inflammatory bowel disease or rheumatoid arthritis, as seen in recent studies.

Thus, it appears that the gut microbiome evolved with technological advances and changes in lifestyles which brought significant benefits to our health, but scientists are starting to realize that the maintenance of a diverse gut’s microbial ecology is important as well. The consumption of natural diets in combination with prebiotics and probiotics may help maintain a healthy microbiome.

Microbiome Plus+ products were all developed to deliver the most clinically researched, highest quality nutritional supplements available. Our research and development team used the new science of the microbiome to understand a gene deficit that appears to be contributing to heart, bone and gastrointestinal disease and deliver the gene in a probiotic to supplement it. If you use them with your patients they will all work!

MICROBIOME PLUS+ HEART – HEART HEALTH PROBIOTIC + OMEGA 3

  • May reduce coronary heart disease risk**
  • Supports healthy cholesterol and triglycerides*
  • Supports normal inflammatory response*
  • Supports healthy blood pressure*
  • Supports healthy bile metabolism*


Microbiome Plus+ Heart is a more complete heart health dietary supplement that provides the full American Heart Association daily dietary recommendation of omega-3 which may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease plus the probiotic L. reuteri NCIMB 30242, which supports normal cholesterol levels and inflammatory response.* The probiotic in Microbiome Plus+ Heart is the only probiotic shown in clinical trials to support healthy bile metabolism and maintain normal cholesterol levels and inflammatory response.* Microbiome Plus+ Heart also provides the full American Heart Association daily dietary recommendation of DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids which may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.✝ Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids have also been shown to maintain healthy triglyceride levels.*

MICROBIOME PLUS+ BONE – BONE HEALTH PROBIOTIC + CALCIUM/VITAMIN D

  • May reduce risk of osteoporosis**
  • Complete source of vitamin D and calcium*
  • Supports healthy levels of 25-Hydroxyvitamin D*
  • Supports healthy bones, joints and muscles
  • Supports healthy bile metabolism*


Microbiome Plus+ Bone is a more complete bone health dietary supplement that provides full daily dietary recommended intake of calcium, and vitamin D3 and the probiotic L. reuteri NCIMB 30242, which helps maintain healthy levels of vitamin D in the body.* The probiotic in Microbiome Plus+ Bone is the only probiotic shown in clinical trials to maintain healthy levels of vitamin D.* Microbiome Plus+ Bone helps replenish the natural bacteria in your body vital for regulating levels of vitamin D and calcium in your blood and also provides the daily requirement of dietary calcium and vitamin D3.* Calcium serves as the key building block for the formation and remodeling of bone. Microbiome Plus+ Bone also contains vitamin D, which is essential to the proper absorption of calcium.* Adequate calcium and vitamin D throughout life, as part of a well-balanced diet, may reduce the risk of osteoporosis.


MICROBIOME PLUS+ GI – GUT HEALTH PROBIOTIC + PREBIOTIC FIBER

  • Supports gastrointestinal and immune health*
  • Maintains balance of healthy bacteria*
  • Supports normal inflammatory response*
  • Supports healthy bile metabolism*
  • Synbiotic formulation with pre and probiotic*
Microbiome Plus+ Gastrointestinal is a more complete gastrointestinal health dietary supplement that provides natural prebiotic fiber (scFOS) and the probiotic L. reuteri NCIMB 30242 which work together to maintain the balance of healthy bacteria in your gut and support normal digestive function.* The probiotic in Microbiome Plus+ Gastrointestinal has been shown in clinical trials to help support normal inflammatory response in addition to supporting digestive health.* scFOS is a natural prebiotic fiber that supports a healthy gastrointestinal tract by promoting digestive function, immune health, the growth of healthy bacteria, natural intestinal mechanical barriers, and gut integrity.* Microbiome Plus+ Gastrointestinal combines these two ingredients to provide more complete gastrointestinal health support.* Not only does scFOS support digestive function but as a prebiotic helps L. reuteri NCIMB 30242 to support normal gastrointestinal function.*

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