25 August 2021

Cooperation between CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology and the Universiti Sains Malaysia

Cooperation between institutions in China and Malaysia leads to successful research

CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology (CoEBio) and Universiti Sains Malaysia Prof. Min-TzeLiong carried out a fruitful cooperation on the probiotic function of lactic acid bacteria in the field of health microbiome. In the project, CoEBio was handling the microbiome sequencing and data analysis. 

In 2018, dozens of probiotics from different sources were systematically evaluated through microbial diversity analysis and phenotypic results of Drosophila melanogaster Alzheimer’s disease (AD) model. The administration of the resulting strains—the Lactobacillus plantarum DR7 in particular—were able to repair the compound eyes and the intestinal flora of the rough eye phenotype (REP) seen in AD-induced Drosophila, with a more prominent effect observed upon the administration of Lactobacillus plantarum DR7 (DR7). The research was published in Beneficial Microbes.

Based on the above cooperation, the clinical double-blind experimental collaboration on functional microorganisms was further advanced in 2019. The research evaluated the effects of strain DR7 on cognitive behaviours and gut microbiota compositional changes, and determined the correlations between microbiota changes and the pathways of brain neurotransmitters. The intervention function of strain DR7 was speculated to regulate intestinal peristalsis and intestinal microflora structure, in association with changes along the brain neurotransmitters pathways of serotonin and dopamine-norepinephrine. Compared to the placebo, the diversity of intestinal flora in DR7 treatment group over 12 weeks was enriched with class Deltaproteobacteria, Bacteroidia and Negativicutes, while the abundance of Clostridia was decreased significantly. The work showed that physiological changes induced by strain DR7 could be associated with changes in specific taxa of the gut microbiota along the serotonin and dopamine pathways. The research was published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences in 2020.

China and Malaysia actively promoted the progress of the project and discussed further cooperation, providing new scientific understanding of human health management and disease treatment, and alleviating Malaysia's increasing health care pressure related with population, resources and environment.

Introduction of CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology (CoEBio)

CAS-TWAS Centre of Excellence for Biotechnology (CoEBio) was founded in 2013 and is affiliated with CAS Institute of Microbiology. CoEBio aims at improving and supporting biotechnology education with the purpose of providing biotechnological solutions to address a wide range of challenges faced by developing countries, particularly those related to energy, population, health and environment.

The main mission of CoEBio includes:

1. Assisting developing countries in advancing the education of students and scholars in the area of biotechnology;

2. Organizing biotechnology training courses, conferences, symposiums and workshops in developing countries;

3. Coordinating biotechnology-related research and development projects for developing countries; and

4. Supporting strategic intelligence analysis for biotechnology development in developing countries.


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