Aging-related changes in the diversity of women's skin microbiomes associated with oral bacteria

Sci Rep. 2017 Sep 5;7(1):10567. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-10834-9.


Skin aging is associated with changes in cutaneous physiology including interactions with a skin microbial community. A striking alteration and diversification in the skin microbiome with aging was observed between two different age groups of 37 healthy Japanese women, i.e. younger adults of 21-37 years old and older adults of 60-76 years old, using bacterial 16S rRNA gene sequencing. The analyses revealed that the alpha diversity/species richness was significantly higher in the older than the younger group for the cheek and forehead microbiomes, while the beta diversity in the overall structure significantly differed particularly for the forearm and scalp microbiomes between the two age groups. Taxonomic profiling showed a striking reduction in the relative abundance of the majority skin genus Propionibacterium in the cheek, forearm and forehead microbiomes of the older adults, and identified 38 species including many oral bacteria that significantly differentiated the two age groups with a skin site dependency. Furthermore, we found chronological age-related and unrelated skin clinical parameters that correlate with the observed changes in the skin microbiome diversity. Thus, our data suggested that the diversification of skin microbiomes in adult women was largely affected by chronological and physiological skin aging in association with oral bacteria.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Microbiota*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth Mucosa / growth & development
  • Mouth Mucosa / microbiology*
  • Propionibacterium / genetics
  • Propionibacterium / isolation & purification
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S / genetics
  • Skin / growth & development
  • Skin / microbiology*


  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S