Author(s) Takahashi, K.; Suzuki, N.; Ogra, Y.
Journal Food Chem
Date Published 2020 Jul 30

Since selenium (Se) is an essential mineral, animals must be able to metabolize the various selenocompounds in meat, fish and vegetables. It is unclear how animals, including humans, utilize selenocompound efficiently, but we hypothesized that gut microflora might contribute to these processes. In this study, we revealed that Se-methylselenocysteine and selenocyanate were metabolized to selenomethionine (SeMet) by intestinal microflora, suggesting selenocompounds might be metabolized to SeMet, which can be used by the host organism. The major urinary selenosugar, 1β-methylseleno-N-acetyl-d-galactosamine, was utilized less in microflora-suppressed than healthy rats, suggesting that this sugar can be transformed to a nutritionally available form by gut microflora in animals with a healthy microbiota. We concluded that, in rats at least, gut microflora has a role in the metabolism of Se in the host animal, and this finding might be worth investigating in humans.

DOI 10.1016/j.foodchem.2020.126537
ISSN 1873-7072
Citation Takahashi K, Suzuki N, Ogra Y. Effect of gut microflora on nutritional availability of selenium. Food Chem. 2020;319:126537.