Graduate Research and Discovery Symposium (GRADS)

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2015


TheWestern Diet refers to a diet rich in refined sugars. With an increasing glycemic index observed in Western society, it comes to no surprise that obesity, diabetes, and heart disease are on the rise. Shortened lifespan and increased susceptibility to pathogens are associated with these diseases and linked to increased consumption of foods high in sugar. Therefore, the benefits probiotics have on restoration of shortened lifespan induced by a high glucose diet, and the benefits of probiotics supplementation in combination of cranberry extracts in the model system Caenorhabditis elegans were investigated. By targeting the homologous pathways with humans, C. elegans provides an economical model system with application in humans. Here, we investigated the effects probiotics have on high glucose diet in C. elegans. Consistent with previous studies, when C. elegans was supplemented with each probiotic strain, lifespan was extended. Interestingly, the reversal of glucose induced shortened lifespan and the extension of lifespan in combination with cranberry extracts was strain dependent. The impact that probiotics have on the reversal of detrimental effects associated with a high glucose diet, including protection against known pathogens and pathway targets, is under investigation.