The obligate anaerobic faecal flora of patients with Crohn's disease and their first-degree relatives

Scand J Gastroenterol. 1988 Nov;23(9):1125-31. doi: 10.3109/00365528809090179.


The obligate anaerobic faecal floras of patients with Crohn's disease, their first-degree relatives, and healthy control subjects were compared. The flora of Crohn's patients contained more anaerobic gram-positive coccoid rods and gram-negative rods than that of healthy subjects; on this basis patients and healthy subjects formed two clusters with minor overlap. Nine of 26 children of Crohn's patients were also included within the Crohn's disease cluster. During 5 to 7 years of follow-up study 3 of them presented with remitting abdominal pain, diarrhoea, or weight loss, and in 1 of them Crohn's disease was diagnosed; none of the 17 children with a normal flora showed symptoms possibly due to Crohn's disease. It is concluded that the abnormal flora may be indigenous to subjects predisposed to Crohn's disease, suggesting a direct or indirect relationship between the abnormal faecal flora and Crohn's disease.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bacteria, Anaerobic / isolation & purification*
  • Child
  • Crohn Disease / genetics
  • Crohn Disease / microbiology*
  • Crohn Disease / physiopathology
  • Feces / microbiology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged