Exploration of differential responses to FODMAPs and gluten in people with irritable bowel syndrome- a double-blind randomized cross-over challenge study
Journal article, 2024

There is large variation in response to diet in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and determinants for differential response are poorly understood. Objectives Our aim was to investigate differential clinical and molecular responses to provocation with fermentable oligo-, di-, monosaccharides, and polyols (FODMAPs) and gluten in individuals with IBS. Methods Data were used from a crossover study with week-long interventions with either FODMAPs, gluten or placebo. The study also included a rapid provocation test. Molecular data consisted of fecal microbiota, short chain fatty acids, and untargeted plasma metabolomics. IBS symptoms were evaluated with the IBS severity scoring system. IBS symptoms were modelled against molecular and baseline questionnaire data, using Random Forest (RF; regression and clustering), Parallel Factor Analysis (PARAFAC), and univariate methods. Results Regression and classification RF models were in general of low predictive power (Q2 <= 0.22, classification rate < 0.73). Out of 864 clustering models, only 2 had significant associations to clusters (0.69 < CR < 0.73, p < 0.05), but with no associations to baseline clinical measures. Similarly, PARAFAC revealed no clear association between metabolome data and IBS symptoms. Conclusion Differential IBS responses to FODMAPs or gluten exposures could not be explained from clinical and molecular data despite extensive exploration with different data analytical approaches. The trial is registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as NCT03653689 31/08/2018.

Differential response

Personalized nutrition



Precision health

Clinical trial

Irritable bowel syndrome




Elise Nordin

Chalmers, Life Sciences, Food and Nutrition Science

Rikard Landberg

Chalmers, Life Sciences, Food and Nutrition Science

Per M. Hellstrom

Uppsala University

Carl Brunius

Chalmers, Life Sciences, Food and Nutrition Science


1573-3882 (ISSN) 1573-3890 (eISSN)

Vol. 20 2 21

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Formas (2016-00314), 2016-01-01 -- 2021-12-31.

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Swedish Research Council (VR) (2017-05840), 2018-01-01 -- 2021-12-31.

Subject Categories

Clinical Medicine

Biological Sciences






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