Butyric Acid: How do we produce it?

The human intestine houses trillions of commensal bacteria (gut microbiota) dominated by nearly 800 different species. “Healthy” gut microbiota supports epithelial cell health, nutrient metabolism and breakdown, and indirect mucosal defense against pathogenic bacteria. Gut microbiota ferment non-digestible polysaccharides to yield short-chain fatty acids (SCFA), acetate, propionate, and butyrate. Butyrate is the most dynamic SCFA and important for intestinal health. In addition to serving as the primary fuel source for colonocytes, butyrate maintains gut integrity, modulates inflammation and immune function. Without butyrate, intestinal tissue is vulnerable to apoptosis, inflammation, mucosal atrophy and colonic pathology.