Volume 93, Issue 6
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Understanding how the gut microbiota is affected by diarrhea episodes may help explain alterations in intestinal function among children in low-income settings. This study examined the composition of the gut microbiome of Nicaraguan children both during diarrhea episodes and while free of diarrhea for at least 2 months. Relative abundances of bacterial taxa, phylogenetic diversity, and species richness were determined by 16S amplicon sequencing and compared between paired diarrhea and recovery samples. A total of 66 stools were provided by 25 children enrolled in a 1-year cohort study of diarrhea etiologies. Children in our cohort had a mean age of 21.9 months; 64% were breast-fed, and 10% had received an antibiotic during the diarrhea episode. Overall, phylogenetic diversity and species richness did not differ significantly between diarrhea and recovery stools. However, of children who had a bacterial enteropathogen detected in any diarrhea stool, none experienced an increase in phylogenetic diversity in recovery, whereas of those in whom no bacterial enteropathogens were detected in their diarrhea stool(s), 59% experienced an increase in phylogenetic diversity in recovery ( = 0.008). This preliminary study suggests that recovery of the gut microbiota after a diarrhea episode may take longer time than previously thought and may be pathogen specific.


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  • Received : 01 May 2015
  • Accepted : 23 Jul 2015
  • Published online : 09 Dec 2015

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