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Correlation between gut Microflora and Eczema in Infancy

Dr Priyambada Singh

Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a common skin condition characterized by itchy and inflamed skin that leads to redness, crackingand even open sores in adverse conditions. Eczema tends to be a chronic condition often begins in infancy and childhood with periods of flare up and remissions.  In the recent years, there is growing interest in studies regarding the association between the gut microbiome and various health conditions, including eczema. Early life of infancy is critical period for immune system development and microbial colonization therefore discoveries concerning relationships and interconnection between gut microbiome and health conditions like eczema is very important. The interventions aimed at balancing and manipulating the gut microbiome could have a positive impact on preventing or alleviating eczema symptoms which might involve approaches like probiotics, prebiotics and dietary modifications.

In a recent study participated by pregnant women and their newborns, information about their health, lifestyle, and events during their pregnancy and delivery were collected. Postdelivery, babies were regularly monitored for health conditions and any eczema problems. From birth to 3 years of age, stools samples were collected to analyze gut microflora using 16S rRNA sequencing. The results revealed the alterations in alpha and beta diversity of gut microbiome during first 3 years of life and also showed that variations in this gut microbiota precede the development of eczema in infants. It was also observed that the gut microbiome of children with eczema have depletion of Bacteroides and enrichment of Clostridium sensustricto 1. Thus, concluding that the gut microflora changes drastically over first 3 years of life which depends upon the feeding type, nutrition and use of antibiotics and these gut bacteria could be helpful in preventing or treating eczema.

These type of studies are valuable for identifying the trends and associations over time, especially when it comes to complex conditions like eczema that have multifactorial origin like genetic, environmental and microbial factors.

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