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Pubmed-Exploring the links between gut microbiome changes and irritable bowel syndrome in Han populations in the Tibetan Plateau

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J Zhejiang Univ Sci B. 2023 May 19:1-16. doi: 10.1631/jzus.B2200509. Online ahead of print.


The gut microbiome shows changes under a plateau environment, while the disbalance of intestinal microbiota plays an important role in the pathogenesis of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS); however, the relationship between the two remains unexplored. In this work, we followed up a healthy cohort for up to a year before and after living in a plateau environment and performed 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) sequencing analysis of their fecal samples. Through evaluating the participants' clinical symptoms, combined with an IBS questionnaire, we screened the IBS sub-population in our cohort. The sequencing results showed that a high-altitude environment could lead to changes in the diversity and composition of gut flora. In addition, we found that the longer the time volunteers spent in the plateau environment, the more similar their gut microbiota composition and abundance became compared to those before entering the plateau, and IBS symptoms were significantly alleviated. Therefore, we speculated that the plateau may be a special environment that induces IBS. The taxonomic units g_Alistipes, g_Oscillospira, and s_Ruminococcus_torques, which had been proved to play important roles in IBS pathogenesis, were also abundant in the IBS cohort at high altitudes. Overall, the disbalance of gut microbiota induced by the plateau environment contributed to the high frequency of IBS and the psychosocial abnormalities associated with IBS. Our results prompt further research to elucidate the relevant mechanism.

PMID:37211386 | DOI:10.1631/jzus.B2200509

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