Rett Syndrome Microbiome Study for the Advancement of Novel Nutritional

Beth McCormick

$481,774 AWARDED

The microbiome appears to play a relevant role in the context of the gut-brain axis (GBA). The GBA represents a complex communication system that guarantees the proper maintenance of gastrointestinal homeostasis, while also potentially effecting neurological function. Recent research supports the role of gut microbiome in influencing symptoms in a variety of disorders such as anxiety, depression and autism. A recent pilot study of Rett Syndrome patients identified an altered gut microbiota that was accompanied by a sub-inflammatory intestinal status.

This study will enroll 50 individuals with Rett Syndrome aged 6 years and older. As a control group 20 individuals, age and gender matched (ideally siblings) will also be enrolled.  Stool samples will be collected once a week to establish a baseline, followed by an individualized dietary intervention and subsequent assessment of changes in symptoms and microbiome. The duration will be for 12 weeks and a 24 hour food recall questionnaire will be administered with each stool collection.  Our expectations are that the study will increase our understanding of the Rett gut microbiota and provide crucial information to design beneficial supplements to augment microbiome health.

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