Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from BMC Microbiology and BioMed Central.

Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Microbial fingerprinting detects intestinal microbiota dysbiosis in Zebrafish models with chemically-induced enterocolitis

Qi He1, Lin Wang1, Fan Wang1, Chenyang Wang1, Chun Tang1, Qiurong Li1*, Jieshou Li1 and Qingshun Zhao2

Author Affiliations

1 Research Institute of General Surgery, Jinling Hospital, School of Medicine, Nanjing University, No.305 East Zhongshan Road, Nanjing 210002, China

2 Model Animal Research Center, MOE Key Laboratory of Model Animal for Disease Study, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Microbiology 2013, 13:289  doi:10.1186/1471-2180-13-289

Published: 11 December 2013

Abstract

Background

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) involves a breakdown in interactions between the host immune response and the resident commensal microbiota. Recent studies have suggested gut physiology and pathology relevant to human IBD can be rapidly modeled in zebrafish larvae. The aim of this study was to investigate the dysbiosis of intestinal microbiota in zebrafish models with IBD-like enterocolitis using culture-independent techniques.

Results

IBD-like enterocolitis was induced by exposing larval zebrafish to trinitrobenzenesulfonic acid (TNBS). Pathology was assessed by histology and immunofluorescence. Changes in intestinal microbiota were evaluated by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) and the predominant bacterial composition was determined with DNA sequencing and BLAST and confirmed by real-time polymerase chain reaction. Larval zebrafish exposed to TNBS displayed intestinal-fold architecture disruption and inflammation reminiscent of human IBD. In this study, we defined a reduced biodiversity of gut bacterial community in TNBS-induced coliitis. The intestinal microbiota dysbiosis in zebrafish larvae with IBD-like colitis was characterized by an increased proportion of Proteobacteria (especially Burkholderia) and a decreased of Firmicutes(Lactobacillus group), which were significantly correlated with enterocolitis severity(Pearson correlation p < 0.01).

Conclusions

This is the first description of intestinal microbiota dysbiosis in zebrafish IBD-like models, and these changes correlate with TNBS-induced enterocolitis. Prevention or reversal of this dysbiosis may be a viable option for reducing the incidence and severity of human IBD.

Keywords:
Zebrafish; Denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis; Trinitrobenzenesulfonic acid; Microbiota