Sepsis and the human microbiome. Just another kind of organ failure? a review

Kevin M. Tourelle, Sebastien Boutin, Markus A. Weigand, Felix C.F. Schmitt


Next-generation sequencing (NGS) has been further optimised during the last years and has given us new insights into the human microbiome. The 16S rDNA sequencing, especially, is a cheap, fast, and reliable method that can reveal significantly more microorganisms compared to culture-based diagnostics. It might be a useful method for patients suffering from severe sepsis and at risk of organ failure because early detection and differentiation between healthy and harmful microorganisms are essential for effective therapy. In particular, the gut and lung microbiome in critically ill patients have been probed by NGS. For this review, an iterative approach was used. Current data suggest that an altered microbiome with a decreased alpha-diversity compared to healthy individuals could negatively influence the individual patient’s outcome. In the future, NGS may not only contribute to the diagnosis of complications. Patients at risk could also be identified before surgery or even during their stay in an intensive care unit. Unfortunately, there is still a lack of knowledge to make precise statements about what constitutes a healthy microbiome, which patients exactly have an increased perioperative risk, and what could be a possible therapy to strengthen the microbiome. This work is an iterative review that presents the current state of knowledge in this field.
ZeitschriftJournal of Clinical Medicine
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 2021


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