Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 33175106
Link to DOI – e2020060610.1084/jem.20200606
J Exp Med 2021 Jan; 218(1):
As microbial therapeutics are increasingly being tested in diverse patient populations, it is essential to understand the host and environmental factors influencing the microbiome. Through analysis of 1,359 gut microbiome samples from 946 healthy donors of the Milieu Intérieur cohort, we detail how microbiome composition is associated with host factors, lifestyle parameters, and disease states. Using a genome-based taxonomy, we found biological sex was the strongest driver of community composition. Additionally, bacterial populations shift across decades of life (age 20-69), with Bacteroidota species consistently increased with age while Actinobacteriota species, including Bifidobacterium, decreased. Longitudinal sampling revealed that short-term stability exceeds interindividual differences. By accounting for these factors, we defined global shifts in the microbiomes of patients with non-gastrointestinal tumors compared with healthy donors. Together, these results demonstrated that the microbiome displays predictable variations as a function of sex, age, and disease state. These variations must be considered when designing microbiome-targeted therapies or interpreting differences thought to be linked to pathophysiology or therapeutic response.