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, 20 (44), 16489-97

Microbiota Alterations in Acute and Chronic Gastrointestinal Inflammation of Cats and Dogs


Microbiota Alterations in Acute and Chronic Gastrointestinal Inflammation of Cats and Dogs

Julia B Honneffer et al. World J Gastroenterol.


The intestinal microbiota is the collection of the living microorganisms (bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and viruses) inhabiting the gastrointestinal tract. Novel bacterial identification approaches have revealed that the gastrointestinal microbiota of dogs and cats is, similarly to humans, a highly complex ecosystem. Studies in dogs and cats have demonstrated that acute and chronic gastrointestinal diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), are associated with alterations in the small intestinal and fecal microbial communities. Of interest is that these alterations are generally similar to the dysbiosis observed in humans with IBD or animal models of intestinal inflammation, suggesting that microbial responses to inflammatory conditions of the gut are conserved across mammalian host types. Studies have also revealed possible underlying susceptibilities in the innate immune system of dogs and cats with IBD, which further demonstrate the intricate relationship between gut microbiota and host health. Commonly identified microbiome changes in IBD are decreases in bacterial groups within the phyla Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, and increases within Proteobacteia. Furthermore, a reduction in the diversity of Clostridium clusters XIVa and IV (i.e., Lachnospiraceae and Clostridium coccoides subgroups) are associated with IBD, suggesting that these bacterial groups may play an important role in maintenance of gastrointestinal health. Future studies are warranted to evaluate the functional changes associated with intestinal dysbiosis in dogs and cats.

Keywords: 16S rRNA; Cat; Dog; Inflammatory bowel disease; Microbiome; Probiotic.


Figure 1
Figure 1
Relative proportion of major microbial gene functions in cats and dogs. Metagenomic data adapted from Swanson et al[39], Barry et al[40], and Tun et al[41].

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