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    Home > Biochemistry News > Biotechnology News > Antibiotic use after birth has important effects on infant gut microbiota and resistance

    Antibiotic use after birth has important effects on infant gut microbiota and resistance

    • Last Update: 2022-05-23
    • Source: Internet
    • Author: User
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    The importance of the human gut microbiota to health and disease is important
    Disturbances in the composition of the gut microbiota in infants after birth contribute to a range of health problems early and later in life, such as infantile colic, asthma, allergies, functional gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, and altered immune development in general

    Cesarean section (CS) delivery, formula feeding (as opposed to breastfeeding), and antibiotics all have an impact on the development of the neonatal gut microbiota

    Antibiotic treatment, in particular, has long altered the species diversity (α-diversity) and community composition of the gut microbiota in children and adults

    Microecological side effects may be more pronounced and persistent when antibiotics are administered during the early assembly stage of the gut microbiota in the first few weeks of life

    However, up to 10% of newborns are prescribed broad-spectrum antibiotics to treat early-onset neonatal sepsis (sEONS) within the first week of life


    Recently, a research paper titled "Effects of early-life antibiotics on the developing infant gut microbiome and resistome: a randomized trial" published on Nat Commun focused on neonates who received antibiotics within one week of birth.
    , analyzed their changes in gut microbiome and antimicrobial resistance genes

    The study helps to identify antibiotic regimens with minimal impact on microecology and antimicrobial resistance genes


      In the present study, 147 infants born at ≥36 weeks requiring broad-spectrum antibiotics for sEONS in the first week of life were randomized to receive three commonly used intravenous antibiotic combinations, namely penicillin + gentamicin, Co-clavulanate + gentamicin or amoxicillin + cefotaxime (ZEBRA study, trial registration NL4882)), the mean duration of antibiotic treatment was 48 hours
    A control group of 80 non-antibiotic-treated infants from the healthy birth group (MUIS study, trial registration NL3821)

    Rectal swabs and/or stool samples were collected before and after treatment, at 1, 4, and 12 months of age

    The sample flora was characterized by 16S rRNA sequencing, 31 antimicrobial resistance genes were detected by targeted qPCR, and metagenomic sequencing was performed on a subset of samples for validation


    The results showed that the entire gut microbial community composition and antimicrobial resistance genes were shifted after direct treatment (R2 = 9.
    5%, adjusted presumed value = 0.
    001 and R2 = 7.
    5%, adjusted presumed value = 0.
    001, respectively), and normalization resumed at 12 months of age (R2 = 1.
    1%, adjusted ps = 0.
    03 and R2 = 0.
    6%, adjusted ps = 0.
    23, respectively)

    The study found that infants taking antibiotics had decreased abundance of bifidobacteria and increased abundance of Klebsiella and Enterococcus compared with controls

    Amoxicillin + cefotaxime had the greatest effect on infant gut microbial community composition and resistance gene profiles, while penicillin + gentamicin had the least effect


    Average relative abundance of gut microbes in infants  

    These data suggest that empirical use of antibiotics can cause adverse gut microbiological side effects (Bioon.



    Reyman, M.
    , van Houten, MA, Watson, RL et al.
    Effects of early-life antibiotics on the developing infant gut microbiome and resistome: a randomized trial.
    Nat Commun 13, 893 (2022).

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