Unique Subgingival Microbiota Associated With Periodontitis in Cirrhosis Patients

Sci Rep. 2018 Jul 16;8(1):10718. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-28905-w.


Liver cirrhosis is a severe disease with major impact on the overall health of the patient including poor oral health. Lately, there has been increasing focus on oral diseases as cirrhosis-related complications due to the potential impact on systemic health and ultimately mortality. Periodontitis is one of the most common oral diseases in cirrhosis patients. However, no studies have investigated the composition of the subgingival microbiome in patients suffering from periodontitis and liver cirrhosis. We analysed the subgingival microbiome in 21 patients with periodontitis and cirrhosis using long-reads Illumina sequencing. The subgingival microbiota was dominated by bacteria belonging to the Firmicutes phylum and to a lesser extend the Actinobacteria and Bacteroidetes phyla. Bacteria usually considered periodontal pathogens, like Porhyromonas ginigivalis, Tannerella forsythia, Treponema denticola, generally showed low abundancy. Comparing the microbiota in our patients with that of periodontitis patients and healthy controls of three other studies revealed that the periodontitis-associated subgingival microbiota in cirrhosis patients is composed of a unique microbiota of bacteria not normally associated with periodontitis. We hypothesise that periodontitis in cirrhosis patients is a consequence of dysbiosis due to a compromised immune system that renders commensal bacteria pathogenic.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Bacteria / genetics
  • Bacteria / immunology
  • Bacteria / isolation & purification
  • Bacteria / pathogenicity*
  • Cohort Studies
  • DNA, Bacterial / isolation & purification
  • Dysbiosis / immunology
  • Dysbiosis / microbiology*
  • Female
  • Gingiva / immunology
  • Gingiva / microbiology
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • Liver Cirrhosis / complications
  • Liver Cirrhosis / immunology*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / microbiology
  • Male
  • Microbiota / genetics
  • Microbiota / immunology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Periodontitis / immunology
  • Periodontitis / microbiology*
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S / genetics
  • Symbiosis / immunology


  • DNA, Bacterial
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 16S