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Lab Reports
November 5, 2014

Artificial Sweeteners May Promote Metabolic Disorders

JAMA. 2014;312(17):1729. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.14881

Mice fed artificial sweeteners for 11 weeks develop glucose intolerance, a precursor to type 2 diabetes, due to alterations in the composition of their gut microbes, researchers from Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science have reported (Suez J et al. Nature. doi:10.1038/nature13793 [published online September 17, 2014]). Treating the animals with antibiotics abrogated these metabolic effects.

When the investigators transplanted feces from glucose-intolerant saccharin-fed mice into germ-free mice bred to have sterile intestines, those mice also became glucose intolerant.