The Necessity for an Iranian Gut Microbiome Initiative


The human intestinal tract is home to a complex ecosystem of commensal bacteria that live in a mutually beneficial state with the host. The study of the intestinal microbiota has gained considerable attention in recent years as it has been found to contribute to intestinal and extraintestinal diseases.1 Defining the normal microbiome is a pre-requisite of investigating the effect of modifying factors including disease, age, genetic, diet, medication, and the environment. As a result, key national and international initiatives have been formed worldwide (Table 1). Microbiota composition is affected by a number of factors including host genetics, diet, ethnicity, geography, age, and pre/pro/antibiotics. It is argued that geography is the strongest predictor of the gut microbiota composition. Specifically, it has been shown that the effect of aging on the gut microbiota composition of Europeans was country-specific.2 Moreover, the gut microbiota composition was also found to differ in urban and rural populations in Russia,3 thereby, accentuating the requirement for a national microbiome project. A major caveat of current microbiome initiatives is the study of individuals of predominantly European origins. Therefore, an Iranian Gut Micro1. Digestive Oncology Research Center, Digestive Disease Research Institute, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran Shirin Moossavi1*

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Moossavi2014TheNF, title={The Necessity for an Iranian Gut Microbiome Initiative}, author={Shirin Moossavi}, booktitle={Middle East journal of digestive diseases}, year={2014} }