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Apparition of Clostridium sp. and Bacteroides in the intestine of the newborn delivered by cesarian section.

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Medical Microbiology, University of Ioannina Medical School, Greece.


Anaerobic flora plays a key role in preventing intestinal colonization with potential pathogens. Nowadays, the mechanisms involved in the colonization resistance provided by the anaerobic microflora are to be clarified. Numerous factors seem to intervene in the regulation of the intestinal flora. The purpose of the present study was to correlate the presence or relative absence of Clostridium sp. and Bacteroides with the colonization by C. perfringens, which is involved in lethal infections in an immunologically compromised host. The intestinal bacterial colonization of 20 newborns delivered by cesarian section was assessed sequentially over the first 14 days of life. C. perifringens is a strongly reducing microorganism and undoubtedly causes a decrease in the oxidoreduction potential of the newborn feces favouring the subsequent colonization by other putrefactive bacteria. C. perfringens seems to be the precursor for installation of putrefractive bacteria, as Bacteroides and other Clostridium sp.

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