Species Diversity of Bifidobacteria in the Intestinal Microbiota Studied Using MALDI-TOF Mass-Spectrometry

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Background: The members of genus Bifidobacterium represent a significant part of intestinal microbiota in adults and predominate in infants. Species repertoire of the intestinal bifidobacteria is known to be subjected to major changes with age; however, many details of this process are still to be elucidated.

Objective: Our aim was to study the diversity of intestinal bifidobacteria and changes of their qualitative and quantitative composition characteristics during the process of growing up using MALDI-TOF mass-spectrometric analysis of pure bacterial cultures.

Methods: A cross-sectional study of bifidobacteria in the intestinal microbiota was performed in 93 healthy people of the ages from 1 month to 57 years. Strains were identified using Microflex LT MALDI-TOF MS, the confirmation was performed by 16S rRNA gene fragment sequencing.

Results: 93% of isolated bifidobacterial strains were successfully identified using MALDI-TOF mass-spectrometry. At least two of the strains from each species were additionally identified by 16S rRNA gene fragment sequencing, in all of the cases the results were the same. It was shown that the total concentration of bifidobacteria decreases with age (p <0.001) as well as the frequency of isolation of Bifidobacterium bifidum (p =0.020) and Bifidobacterium breve (p <0.001), and the frequency of isolation of Bifidobacterium adolescentis, increases (p <0.001), representing the continuous process of transformation of microbiota.

Conclusion: The method of MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry demonstrated the ability to perform rapid and reliable identification of bifidobacteria that allowed the study of changes in the quantitative and qualitative characteristics of human microbiota in the process of growing up.

About the authors

A. V. Chaplin

N.I. Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University

Author for correspondence.
Email: okolomedik@gmail.com
Moscow Russian Federation

A. G. Brzhozovskii

N.I. Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University

Email: barjik@mail.ru
Moscow Russian Federation

T. V. Parfenova

Research Institute of Physical-Chemical Medicine

Email: parfenova1983@gmail.com
Moscow Russian Federation

L. I. Kafarskaia

N.I. Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University

Email: likmed@mail.ru
Moscow Russian Federation

N. N. Volodin

D. Rogachev Federal Research Center of Pediatric Hematology, Oncology and Immunology

Email: info@fnkc.ru
Moscow Russian Federation

A. N. Shkoporov

N.I. Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University

Email: a.shkoporov@gmail.com
Moscow Russian Federation

E. N. Ilina

Research Institute of Physical-Chemical Medicine

Email: ilinaen@gmail.com
Moscow Russian Federation

B. A. Efimov

N.I. Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University

Email: efimov_ba@mail.ru
Moscow Russian Federation


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