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Nat Rev Microbiol. 2013 Apr;11(4):277-84. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro2989. Epub 2013 Mar 11.

'Blooming' in the gut: how dysbiosis might contribute to pathogen evolution.

Author information

1
German Centre for Infection Research and the Max von Pettenkofer-Institut, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universit√§t M√ľnchen, Pettenkoferstrasse 9, 80336 Munich, Germany.

Abstract

Hundreds of bacterial species make up the mammalian intestinal microbiota. Following perturbations by antibiotics, diet, immune deficiency or infection, this ecosystem can shift to a state of dysbiosis. This can involve overgrowth (blooming) of otherwise under-represented or potentially harmful bacteria (for example, pathobionts). Here, we present evidence suggesting that dysbiosis fuels horizontal gene transfer between members of this ecosystem, facilitating the transfer of virulence and antibiotic resistance genes and thereby promoting pathogen evolution.

PMID:
23474681
DOI:
10.1038/nrmicro2989
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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