General Anesthesia Alters the Diversity and Composition of the Intestinal Microbiota in Mice


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Abstract

Dysbiosis of the intestinal microbiota has been shown to result in altered immune responses and increased susceptibility to infection; as such, the state of the intestinal microbiome may have profound implications in the perioperative setting. In this first-in-class study, we used 16s ribosomal RNA sequencing and analysis in a mouse model of general anesthesia to investigate the effects of volatile anesthetics on the diversity and composition of the intestinal microbiome. After 4-hour exposure to isoflurane, we observed a decrease in bacterial diversity. Taxonomic alterations included depletion of several commensal bacteria including Clostridiales. These data identify volatile anesthetics as potential contributors to microbial dysbiosis in the postoperative patient.

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