Tohoku J. Exp. Med., 2021 June, 254(2)

Comparative Study of Oral Bacteria and Fungi Microbiota in Tibetan and Chinese Han Living at Different Altitude

Ke Dong,1,2 Kunpeng Wu,1,2 Tianli Zheng,1,2 Ji Yue,1,2 Weipeng Wang,1,2 Ruocheng Luo,1,2 Lan You,1,2 Xun He,1,2 Jingjing Li,1,2 Zehui Hong,1,2 Haojiang Zuo1,2 and Xiaofang Pei1,2

1West China School of Public Health and West China Fourth Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan, China
2Food Safety Monitoring and Risk Assessment Key Laboratory of Sichuan Province, Chengdu, Sichuan, China

Knowledge about the impact of altitude and ethnicity on human oral microbiota is currently limited. To obtain the baseline of normal salivary microbiota, we analyzed the bacteria and fungi composition in Tibetan (HY group) and Han population (CD group) living at different altitudes by using next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology combined with PICRUSt and FUNGuild analyses. There were significant differences in oral microbiota composition between the two groups at phylum and genus levels. At the phylum level, the HY group had higher relative abundances of Firmicutes and Ascomycota, whereas the Bacteroidetes and Basidiomycota in the CD group were richer. These changes at the phylum level reflected different dominant genus compositions. Compared with the Han population, Candida, Fusarium, Zopfiella, Streptococcus, Veillonella and Rothia in Tibetan were higher. Surprisingly, the Zopfiella was found almost exclusively in the Tibetan. The PICRUSt and FUNGuild analysis also indicated that the function of the bacterial and fungal communities was altered between the two groups. In conclusion, our results suggest that there are significant differences in oral microbial structure and metabolic characteristics and trophic modes among Tibetan and Han population living at different altitudes. We first established the oral microbiota framework and represented a critical step for determining the diversity of oral microbiota in the Tibetan and Han population.

Key words —— Internal Transcribed Spacer 1 (ITS1); oral microbiota; plateau environment; saliva; 16S rRNA gene sequencing

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Tohoku J. Exp. Med 2021, 254, 129-139.

Correspondence: Xiaofang Pei, West China School of Public Health, No.4 West China Teaching Hospital, Sichuan University, #16 Section 3, Renmin Nan Lu, Chengdu, Sichuan 610041, China.

e-mail: xxpeiscu@163.com

Correspondence: Haojiang Zuo, West China School of Public Health, No.4 West China Teaching Hospital, Sichuan University, #16 Section 3, Renmin Nan Lu, Chengdu, Sichuan 610041, China.

e-mail: zuohaojiang@scu.edu.cn