Introduction. Human skin microbial communities represent a tremendous source of genetic diversity that evolves as a function of human age. Microbiota differs between regions of oily and moist skin, and appears to stabilize with age.
Aim. We have a minimal understanding of the time frame required for the stabilization of skin microbiota, and the role played by gender. In the current study, we examined the microbiota present in the navel region of college-attending young adults in the age group of 18–25 years and investigated if diversity is associated with gender (male and female).
Method. The study involved 16 female and six male subjects. Isolated DNA samples from navel swabs were processed using the Nextera XT library preparation kit and sequenced using the MiSeq platform. Data were analysed using QIIME and statistical analysis performed in R.
Results. Microbiota of navel skin is dominated by Corynebacterium and Staphylococcus and includes opportunistic pathogens like Clostridium and Pseudomonas . Also present as the major component of the flora were the organisms normally associated with the gastrointestinal tract such as Acinetobacter , Campylobacter , Klebsiella and organisms from the Enterobacteriaceae and Moraxellaceae families. Comparison of alpha and beta diversity of the microbiota in the male and female navel regions suggests that the flora is not statistically different (P>0.05). However, pairwise comparison suggests that the abundance of 12 specific genera varied with gender, including higher abundance of Klebsiella and Enterobacter in females.
Conclusion. Our findings indicate that the navel skin microbiota of young adults has a core microbiota of Corynebacterium and Staphylococcus . We also noted the presence of a significant number of opportunistic pathogens. A minor gender difference in the abundance of individual organisms was also observed.
Journal of Medical Microbiology
Shah, S., Donze-Reiner, T., & Shah, V. (2020). Diversity of navel microbiome in young adults. Journal of Medical Microbiology, 69(5), 721-727. http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/jmm.0.001192