Honors Program


Date of this Version


Document Type



Works, D. 2022. The Effects of Red Raspberry Pulp Polyphenols and their Gut Microbiota-Derived Metabolites, the Urolithins, on High Fat Diet-Induced Obesity. Undergraduate Honors Thesis. University of Nebraska-Lincoln,


Copyright Duncan Works 2022.


Urolithins are gut metabolites of polyphenols that are produced through microbial metabolism. Red raspberries are rich in a specific polyphenol known as ellagic acid. Research has revealed that urolithins have the potential to improve insulin sensitivity and attenuate triglyceride accumulation. Gordonibacter urolithinfaciens (G. uro) is a specific gut microbe that aids in the conversion of polyphenols to urolithins. Through four distinct groups of mice treated in vivo with varying necessary components for urolithin production, the health benefits of urolithins were analyzed. All mice were exposed to high fat diets and weighed and analyzed weekly. G. uro was administered through the drinking water and was found to persist in the gut throughout the experiment. The mice supplemented with G. uro were leaner than mice in the other groups and had lower blood glucose levels. This G. uro supplementation demonstrated the positive metabolic impacts that urolithins can provide.