Transl Psychiatry. 2019 01 29 ;9(1):43. Epub 2019 Jan 29. PMID: 30696816
Altered composition and function of intestinal microbiota in autism spectrum disorders: a systematic review.
At present, the pathophysiology of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) remains unclear. Increasing evidence suggested that gut microbiota plays a critical role in gastrointestinal symptoms and behavioral impairment in ASD patients. The primary aim of this systematic review is to investigate potential evidence for the characteristic dysbiosis of gut microbiota in ASD patients compared with healthy controls (HCs). The MEDLINE, EMBASE, Web of Science and Scopus were systematically searched before March 2018. Human studies that compared the composition of gut microbiota in ASD patients and HCs using culture-independent techniques were included. Independent data extraction and quality assessment of studies were conducted according to PRISMA statement and Newcastle-Ottawa Scale. Phylogenetic Investigation of Communities by Reconstruction of Unobserved States (PICRUSt) was used to infer biological functional changes of the shifted microbiota with the available data in four studies. Sixteen studies with a total sample size of 381 ASD patients and 283 HCs were included in this systematic review. The quality of the studies was evaluated as medium to high. The overall changing of gut bacterial community in terms ofβ-diversity was consistently observed in ASD patients compared with HCs. Furthermore, Bifidobacterium, Blautia, Dialister, Prevotella, Veillonella, and Turicibacter were consistently decreased, while Lactobacillus, Bacteroides, Desulfovibrio, and Clostridium were increased in patients with ASD relative to HCs in certain studies. This systematic review demonstrated significant alterations of gut microbiota in ASD patients compared with HCs, strengthen the evidence that dysbiosis of gut microbiota may correlate with behavioral abnormality in ASD patients. However, results of inconsistent changing also existed and further big-sampled well-designed studies are needed. Generally, as a potential mediator of risk factors, the gut microbiota could be a novel target for ASD patients in the future.