In a genome-wide association analysis of 8,956 German individuals, the authors identified 38 genetic loci to be associated with single bacterial species and overall microbiome composition. Further analyses confirm the identified associations of blood groups and the presence of certain bacterial species. In some people, blood group antigens are not only formed on the surface of red blood cells but are also released into the intestine. These are mainly sugar residues, which can possibly be used as an energy source by some bacteria, making these occur more frequently. Particularly in people with blood groups A, AB or B, this mechanism thus seems to directly promote the occurrence of these bacteria in the human intestine.
Genome-wide association study in 8,956 German individuals identifies influence of ABO histo-blood groups on gut microbiome
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