Antibiotics and the human gut microbiome: dysbioses and accumulation of resistances

Frontiers in Microbiology. 2016;6 DOI 10.3389/fmicb.2015.01543

 

Journal Homepage

Journal Title: Frontiers in Microbiology

ISSN: 1664-302X (Online)

Publisher: Frontiers Media S.A.

LCC Subject Category: Science: Microbiology

Country of publisher: Switzerland

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF, HTML, ePUB, XML

 

AUTHORS

M Pilar eFrancino (Fundación para el Fomento de la Investigación Sanitaria y Biomédica de la Comunitat Valenciana (FISABIO)-Salud Pública)

EDITORIAL INFORMATION

Blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 14 weeks

 

Abstract | Full Text

The human microbiome is overly exposed to antibiotics, due, not only to their medical use, but also to their utilization in farm animals and crops. Microbiome composition can be rapidly altered by exposure to antibiotics, with potential immediate effects on health, for instance through the selection of resistant opportunistic pathogens that can cause acute disease. Microbiome alterations induced by antibiotics can also indirectly affect health in the long-term. The mutualistic microbes in the human body interact with many physiological processes, and participate in the regulation of immune and metabolic homeostasis. Therefore, antibiotic exposure can alter many basic physiological equilibria, promoting long-term disease. In addition, excessive antibiotic use fosters bacterial resistance, and the overly exposed human microbiome has become a significant reservoir of resistance genes, contributing to the increasing difficulty in controlling bacterial infections. Here, the complex relationships between antibiotics and the human microbiome are reviewed, with focus on the intestinal microbiota, addressing 1) the effects of antibiotic use on the composition and function of the gut microbiota, 2) the impact of antibiotic-induced microbiota alterations on immunity, metabolism, and health, and 3) the role of the gut microbiota as a reservoir of antibiotic resistances.