UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

Lactobacillus-deficient vaginal microbiota dominate post-partum women in rural Malawi

Doyle, R; Gondwe, A; Fan, Y-M; Maleta, K; Ashorn, P; Klein, N; Harris, K; (2018) Lactobacillus-deficient vaginal microbiota dominate post-partum women in rural Malawi. Applied and Environmental Microbiology , 84 (6) , Article e02150-17. 10.1128/AEM.02150-17. Green open access

[thumbnail of Doyle VoR e02150-17.full.pdf]
Preview
Text
Doyle VoR e02150-17.full.pdf - Published Version

Download (2MB) | Preview

Abstract

The bacterial community found in the vagina is an important determinant of a woman's health and disease. A healthy vaginal microbiota is associated with a lower species richness and high proportions of one of a number of different Lactobacillus spp.. When disrupted the resulting abnormal vaginal microbiota is associated with a number of disease states and poor pregnancy outcomes. Studies up until now have concentrated on relatively small numbers of American and European populations which may not capture the full complexity of the community, nor adequately predict what constitutes a healthy microbiota in all populations. In this study we sampled and characterised the vaginal microbiota from a cohort of 1107 women in rural Malawi found on vaginal swabs taken post-partum. We found a population dominated by Gardnerella vaginalis and devoid of the most common vaginal Lactobacillus species, even if the vagina was sampled over a year post-partum. The Lactobacillus-deficient anaerobic community commonly labelled community state type (CST) 4 could be sub-divided into four further communities. A Lactobacillus iners dominated vaginal microbiota became more common the longer after delivery the vagina was sampled, but G. vaginalis remained the dominant organism. These results outline the difficulty in all-encompassing definitions of what a healthy or abnormal vaginal microbiota is post-partum. Previous identification of community state types and associations between bacterial species, bacterial vaginosis and adverse birth outcomes may not represent the complex heterogeneity of the microbiota present.ImportanceA bacterial community in the vaginal tract that is dominated by small number of bacterial Lactobacillus species and when they are not present, there is a greater incidence of inflammatory conditions and adverse birth outcomes. A switch to a vaginal bacterial community lacking in Lactobacillus species is common after pregnancy. In this study we characterised the vaginal microbiota after delivery of a large group of women from a resource poor, under-sampled population in rural Malawi. The majority of women were found to have a Lactobacillus-deficient community and even after a year after delivery the majority of women still did not have Lactobacillus present in their vaginal microbiota. The effect of becoming pregnant again for those who do not revert to a Lactobacillus dominant community is unknown and could suggest that not all Lactobacillus-deficient community structures are adverse. A better understanding is needed of this complex community state type.

Type: Article
Title: Lactobacillus-deficient vaginal microbiota dominate post-partum women in rural Malawi
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1128/AEM.02150-17
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/AEM.02150-17
Language: English
Additional information: © 2018 Doyle et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Infection, Immunity and Inflammation Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10041197
Downloads since deposit
67Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item