Dynamics of the infant gut microbiota in the first 18 months of life: the impact of maternal HIV infection and breastfeeding.
Martin, Olivia A
Fraser, Claire M
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AbstractBackground: Access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) during pregnancy and breastfeeding for mothers with HIV has resulted in fewer children acquiring HIV peri- and postnatally, resulting in an increase in the number of children who are exposed to the virus but are not infected (HEU). HEU infants have an increased likelihood of childhood infections and adverse growth outcomes, as well as increased mortality compared to their HIV-unexposed (HUU) peers. We explored potential differences in the gut microbiota in a cohort of 272 Nigerian infants born to HIV-positive and negative mothers in this study during the first 18 months of life. Results: The taxonomic composition of the maternal vaginal and gut microbiota showed no significant differences based on HIV status, and the composition of the infant gut microbiota at birth was similar between HUU and HEU. Longitudinal taxonomic composition of the infant gut microbiota and weight-for-age z-scores (WAZ) differed depending on access to breast milk. HEU infants displayed overall lower WAZ than HUU infants at all time points. We observed a significantly lower relative abundance of Bifidobacterium in HEU infants at 6 months postpartum. Breast milk composition also differed by time point and HIV infection status. The antiretroviral therapy drugs, lamivudine and nevirapine, as well as kynurenine, were significantly more abundant in the breast milk of mothers with HIV. Levels of tiglyl carnitine (C5) were significantly lower in the breast milk of mothers without HIV. ART drugs in the breast milk of mothers with HIV were associated with a lower relative abundance of Bifidobacterium longum. Conclusions: Maternal HIV infection was associated with adverse growth outcomes of HEU infants in this study, and these differences persist from birth through at least 18 months, which is a critical window for the development of the immune and central nervous systems. We observed that the relative abundance of Bifidobacterium spp. was significantly lower in the gut microbiota of all HEU infants over the first 6 months postpartum, even if HEU infants were receiving breast milk. Breastfeeding was of benefit in our HEU infant cohort in the first weeks postpartum; however, ART drug metabolites in breast milk were associated with a lower abundance of Bifidobacterium. Video abstract.
Rights/Terms© 2022. The Author(s).
Adverse growth outcome
Breast milk metabolome
Identifier to cite or link to this itemhttp://hdl.handle.net/10713/18607
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