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J Med Primatol. 2014 Apr;43(2):89-99. doi: 10.1111/jmp.12090. Epub 2013 Nov 23.

Impact of a hormone-releasing intrauterine system on the vaginal microbiome: a prospective baboon model.

Author information

1
Unit for Laboratory Animal Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Use of a levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system (LNG-IUS) in humans may alter vaginal microbial populations and susceptibility to pathogens. This study evaluated the time-dependent effects of an LNG-IUS on the vaginal microbiome of the baboon, a useful animal model for reproductive studies.

METHODS:

Levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine systems were inserted into three reproductively mature, female baboons. The animals were evaluated for 6 months by physical examination and Gram-stained cytology. The vaginal microbiota was characterized at each timepoint by culture-independent analysis of the 16S rRNA-encoding gene.

RESULTS:

Each baboon harbored a diverse vaginal microbiome. Interindividual variation exceeded intra-individual variation. Diversity declined over time in one baboon and showed mild fluctuations in the other two. There were no significant community differences from early to late post-LNG-IUS placement.

CONCLUSIONS:

The baboon vaginal microbiome is unique to each individual and is polymicrobial. In this pilot study, the vaginal microbiome remained stable from early to late post-LNG-IUS placement.

KEYWORDS:

levonorgestrel; non-human primate; pyrosequencing

PMID:
24266633
PMCID:
PMC3954920
DOI:
10.1111/jmp.12090
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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