A population-based study on associations of stool microbiota with atopic diseases in school-age children

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Abstract

Background: Infants with less diverse gut microbiota seem to have higher risks of atopic diseases in early life, but any associations at school age are unclear. Objectives: This study sought to examine the associations of diversity, relative abundance, and functional pathways of stool microbiota with atopic diseases in school-age children. Methods: We performed a cross-sectional study within an existing population-based prospective cohort among 1440 children 10 years of age. On stool samples, 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing was performed, and taxonomic and functional tables were produced. Physician-diagnosed eczema, allergy, and asthma were measured by questionnaires, allergic sensitization by skin prick tests, and lung function by spirometry. Results: The α-diversity of stool microbiota was associated with a decreased risk of eczema (odds ratio [OR], 0.98; 95% CI, 0.97, 1.00), and β-diversity was associated with physician-diagnosed inhalant allergy (R2 = 0.001; P = .047). Lachnospiraceae, Ruminococcaceae_UCG-005, and Christensenellaceae_R-7_group species were associated with decreased risks of eczema, inhalant allergic sensitization, and physician-diagnosed inhalant allergy (OR range, 0.88-0.94; 95% CI range, 0.79-0.96 to 0.88-0.98), while Agathobacter species were associated with an increased risk of physician-diagnosed inhalant allergy (OR, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.08-1.42). Functional pathways related to heme and terpenoid biosynthesis were associated with decreased risks of physician-diagnosed inhalant allergy and asthma (OR range, 0.89-0.86; 95% CI range, 0.80-0.99 to 0.73-1.02). No associations of stool microbiota with lung function were observed. Conclusions: The diversity, relative abundance and functional pathways of stool microbiota were most consistently associated with physician-diagnosed inhalant allergy in school-age children and less consistently with other atopic diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)612-620
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Volume148
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Apr 2021

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