The human microbiome represents a large and diverse collection of microbes that plays an integral role in human physiology and pathophysiology through interactions with the host and within the microbial community. While early work exploring links between microbiome signatures and diseases states has been associative, emerging evidence demonstrates the metabolic products of the human microbiome have more proximal causal effects on disease phenotypes. The therapeutic implications of this shift are profound as manipulation of the microbiome by the administration of live biotherapeutics, ongoing, can now be pursued alongside research efforts toward describing inhibitors of key microbiome enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of metabolites implicated in various disease states and processing of host-derived metabolites. With growing interest in ‘drugging the microbiome’, we review few notable microbial metabolites for which traditional drug-development campaigns have yielded compounds with therapeutic promise.
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This work was supported by grants ( AI143784 and AI136445 ) from the National Institutes of Health .
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