Butyrate For the fermentable complex carbohydrates available, colonic flora produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs).
Butyrate, an SCFA, is the principal source of nutrition for the colonocyte.
Mammalian cells do not produce butyrate, the colonic epithelium and luminal bacteria form an essential and elegant symbiotic relationship.
Antibiotics disrupt this cohabitation—decreased bacteria leads to less butyrate, which, in turn, negatively affects colonocyte function leading to diarrhea.
The potential to modulate the activity of the immune system by interventions with specific nutrients is termed immunonutrition.
Major surgery is followed by a period of immunosuppression that increases the risk of morbidity and mortality due to infection. Improving immune function during this period may reduce complications due to infection
The nutrients most often studied for immunonutrition are arginine, glutamine, branched chain amino acids, n-3 fatty acids, and nucleotides