Background: Recent studies suggest that prebiotic and/or probiotic treatments ameliorate kidney function in humans and animals by improving the gut environment. However, the gut microbiota and kidney disease interactions remain to be determined. This study investigated whether synbiotics modulate the gut microbiota and ameliorate kidney function using a rat model of chronic kidney disease (CKD). As uremic toxins are associated with CKD-related mineral and bone disorder, the secondary aim was to evaluate the relationship between synbiotics and secondary hyperparathyroidism (SHPT). Methods: 5/6 nephrectomy (Nx) rats were developed as the CKD model. Sham-operated (sham) rats were used as the control. To investigate the effectiveness of prebiotics (glutamine, dietary fiber, and oligosaccharide) and probiotics (Bifidobacterium longum strain; GFOB diet), rats were randomly assigned to 4 groups: Nx group fed the GFOB diet (n = 10); Nx group fed the control (CON) diet (n = 10); sham group fed the GFOB diet (n = 5); and sham group fed the control diet (n = 5). Blood, feces, and kidney samples were collected and analyzed. Results: Serum creatinine (Cre) and blood urea nitrogen in the Nx GFOB group were significantly lower than those in the Nx CON group. Serum indoxyl sulfate in the Nx GFOB group was lower than that in the Nx CON group, and significantly correlated with serum Cre. Inorganic phosphorus and intact parathyroid hormone in the Nx GFOB group were significantly lower than those in the Nx CON group. Conclusion: Improving the gut environment using synbiotics ameliorated kidney function and might be a pharmacological treatment for SHPT without any serious adverse events.

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