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      A comprehensive human minimal gut metagenome extends the host’s metabolic potential

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      bioRxiv

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          ABSTRACT

          Accumulating evidence suggests that humans should be considered as holobionts in which the gut microbiota plays essential functions. Initial metagenomic studies reported a pattern of shared genes in the gut microbiome of different individuals, leading to the definition of the minimal gut metagenome as the set of microbial genes necessary for homeostasis, and present in all healthy individuals. Despite its interest, this concept has received little attention following its initial description in terms of various ubiquitous pathways in Western cohorts. This study analyzes the minimal gut metagenome of the most comprehensive dataset available, including individuals from agriculturalist and industrialist societies, also embodying highly diverse ethnic and geographical backgrounds. The outcome, based on metagenomic predictions for community composition data, resulted in a minimal metagenome comprising 3,412 gene clusters, mapping to 1,856 reactions and 128 metabolic pathways predicted to occur across all individuals. These results were substantiated by the analysis of two additional datasets describing the microbial community compositions of larger Western cohorts, as well as a substantial shotgun metagenomics dataset. Subsequent analyses showed the plausible metabolic complementarity provided by the minimal gut metagenome to the human genome.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          bioRxiv
          October 25 2019
          Article
          10.1101/818138
          © 2019
          Product

          Microbiology & Virology

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