Maturation of the gut microbiome and risk of asthma in childhood

Jakob Stokholm, Martin J. Blaser, Jonathan Thorsen, Morten A. Rasmussen, Johannes Waage, Rebecca K. Vinding, Ann Marie M. Schoos, Asja Kunøe, Nadia R. Fink, Bo L. Chawes, Klaus Bønnelykke, Asker D. Brejnrod, Martin S. Mortensen, Waleed Abu Al-Soud, Søren J. Sørensen, Hans Bisgaard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

143 Scopus citations


The composition of the human gut microbiome matures within the first years of life. It has been hypothesized that microbial compositions in this period can cause immune dysregulations and potentially cause asthma. Here we show, by associating gut microbial composition from 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing during the first year of life with subsequent risk of asthma in 690 participants, that 1-year-old children with an immature microbial composition have an increased risk of asthma at age 5 years. This association is only apparent among children born to asthmatic mothers, suggesting that lacking microbial stimulation during the first year of life can trigger their inherited asthma risk. Conversely, adequate maturation of the gut microbiome in this period may protect these pre-disposed children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number141
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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