Associations between micronutrient intakes and gut microbiota in a group of adults with cystic fibrosis

Li Li, Lutz Krause, Shawn Somerset

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Citations (Scopus)


Background Cystic fibrosis (CF) involves chronic inflammation and oxidative stress affecting mainly the respiratory and digestive systems. Survival rates for CF have improved with advances in treatment including nutritional interventions such as micronutrient supplementation. Diet can modulate gut microbiota in the general population with consequences on local and systemic immunity, and inflammation. The gut microbiota appears disrupted and may associate with pulmonary status in CF. This study investigated associations between micronutrient intakes and gut microbiota variations in a group of adults with CF. Methods Faecal microbiota of sixteen free-living adults with CF was profiled by 16ss rDNA sequencing on the GS-FLX platform. Associations were tested between UniFrac distances of faecal microbiota and time-corresponding micronutrient intakes. Associations between relative abundances of bacterial taxa and micronutrient intakes (those showing significant associations with UniFrac distances) were examined by Spearman correlation. Results Unweighted UniFrac distances were associated with intakes of potassium and antioxidant vitamins C, E and beta-carotene equivalents, whereas weighted UniFrac distances were associated with antioxidant vitamins riboflavin, niacin equivalents, beta-carotene equivalents and vitamin A equivalents. Intakes of beta-carotene equivalents, vitamin C, vitamin E, niacin equivalents and riboflavin correlated negatively with Bacteroides and/or its corresponding higher level taxa. Intakes of beta-carotene equivalents and vitamin E also positively correlated with Firmicutes and specific taxa belonging to Firmicutes. Conclusion Some micronutrients, particularly antioxidant vitamins, correlated with gut microbiota variations in the studied cohort. Further research is required to clarify whether antioxidant vitamin intakes can influence CF gut microbiota and potential clinical/therapeutic implications in CF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1097-1104
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Nutrition
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017
Externally publishedYes


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