It is clear that 'frequency of poop' depends on genes

The frequency of defecation seems to be different for each person, such as those who are hungry or have constipation. However, the latest research reveals that the frequency of defecation in humans depends on genetic information.

GWAS of stool frequency provides insights into gastrointestinal motility and irritable bowel syndrome --ScienceDirect

How often do you poo? New research shows bowel habits are written in our DNA

Most people may usually run into the bathroom when they have a stool, but the situation is a little different for people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). IBS is a syndrome that can affect up to 10% of people worldwide, causing abdominal pain, bloating, irregular bowel habits, constipation, and diarrhea. It's not life-threatening, but 'it can have a serious impact on a person's quality of life,' researchers Mauro D'Amato and Ferdinand Bonfirio point out.

The exact cause of IBS has not been clarified, treatment methods are limited, and symptom relief is the main focus. Also, there has never been a way to know who is at high risk of developing IBS.

Therefore, a research team led by D'Amato and Bonfirio is trying to identify the genetic risk factors for IBS by analyzing the large amount of genetic information and health-related data collected in previous studies. The reason they are doing this analysis is clear, opening up possibilities for future IBS treatment. The research team has published the latest research paper in the academic journal Cell Genomics, which investigates how 'frequency of defecation by humans' and 'genetic information' are related.

According to D'Amato and Bonfirio, investigating the genetic association of complex diseases such as IBS is difficult for a variety of reasons. As one way to proceed with such a difficult investigation, they cite 'breaking down the disease into individual biological components.' This is called an

intermediate phenotype or ' endophenotype'.

They decided to incorporate this approach into their research and study 'intestinal motility' as a characteristic intermediate phenotype of IBS. The reason is that many IBS patients experience bowel dyskinesia. Intestinal motility disorders are those in which the intestines do not function properly to move the contents (food and drink) through the digestive system, which causes symptoms such as constipation and diarrhea.

Direct measurement of intestinal motility requires clinical procedures that are not suitable for large-scale studies. However, previous studies have shown that the frequency of defecation correlates with bowel motility. Therefore, D'Amato and Bonfirio analyzed past research data and analyzed the defecation frequency of 167,875 people and the DNA markers of millions of people to clarify the relationship between defecation frequency and genetic information. ..

Analysis reveals that those who report more or less frequent bowel movements are characterized by 14 regions of the human genome. 'It makes sense,' they said, because there are multiple genes in these areas that are involved in gut-brain communication, including neurotransmitters, hormones, and receptors. However, it is necessary to clarify what biological functions are specifically characterized by most of the 14 human genome regions related to defecation frequency.

Evidence of a similar genetic link has also been found between defecation frequency and IBS. 'In other words, important genetic factors for controlling bowel frequency also seem to be important for the risk of developing IBS,' said D'Amato and Bonfirio.

In addition, the study calculates a polygene risk score , which is a summary of genetic information, to see if it is possible to identify people at high risk of developing IBS. The polygene risk score judgment was more beneficial for IBS characterized by diarrhea, with people with high polygene scores (frequent defecation) being up to five times more likely to develop IBS with diarrhea. Has been clarified.

However, it should be noted that their studies did not consider factors such as lifestyle and diet that affect defecation habits. In addition, defecation frequency polygene risk scores and IBS predictions need to be tested and validated among people of different ethnic backgrounds, they said.

in Science, Posted by logu_ii