Bacterial Dysbiosis

Dysbiosis is usually defined as an “imbalance” within the gut microbial community that's related to disease. This imbalance could be due to the gain or loss of community members or changes in relative abundance of microbes. This theory primarily focuses on changes in the taxonomic make-up of the microbial community and functions associated with individual members or subsets of members in the community. Characterizing dysbiosis has traditionally relied on taxonomic catalogs of gut microbes generated in different individuals at single time points using 16S or 18S rRNA sequencing. More recent efforts have attempted to catalog not the microbial species, but rather the microbial genes in the gut using shotgun metagenomics. The taxonomic characterization or genetic make-up of the community is then wont to infer its functions supported data within the literature from studies using reference microbial strains. Usually, these model microbes are studied as single organisms, and sometimes in vitro so as to get these functional data.Dysbiosis could cause or contribute to IBD during a number of different ways. It could lead to gain of one or more microbes with functions detrimental to the host or loss of one or more microbes with functions beneficial to the host. Since many of the microbes in the gut community have important functional relationships with each other, changes in a small number of microbes and/or their functions could have broad impacts on the community.    

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