Comparison of lung microbiota between antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitis and sarcoidosis

Microbial involvement in the pathogenesis have been suggested in both antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody-associated vasculitis (AAV) and sarcoidosis, both of which have lung involvement. However, exhaustive research to assess the bacteria in the lung in AAV and in sarcoidosis have not been performed. We sought to elucidate the distinct dysbiotic lung microbiota between AAV and sarcoidosis. We used 16S rRNA gene high-throughput sequencing to obtain the bacterial community composition of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) in patients with AAV (n = 16) compared to patients with sarcoidosis (n = 21). The patients had not undergone therapy with immunosuppressive medication when their BALF was acquired. No difference was observed in α-diversity between patients with AAV and patients with sarcoidosis when using all the detected taxa. We defined the taxa of the oral cavity by using the data of oral microbiota of healthy individuals from the Human Microbiome Project (HMP). The analysis using only oral taxa made the difference in α-diversity between AAV and sarcoidosis clearer compared with those using all the detected taxa. Besides, the analysis using detected taxa except for oral taxa also made the difference in α-diversity between AAV and sarcoidosis clearer compared with those using all the detected taxa. A linear negative relationship between the α-diversity and Birmingham vasculitis activity score (BVAS) was detected in the AAV group. The observed p-value for the effect of the disease groups on the ß-diversity was small while the effect of other factors including sex and smoking status did not have small p-values. By excluding oral taxa from all the detected taxa, we found a cluster mainly consisted of sarcoidosis patients which was characterized with microbial community monopolized by Erythrobacteraceae family. Our results suggested the importance of considering the influence of oral microbiota in evaluating lung microbiota.

as reported in: Sci Rep. 2020 Jun 11; 10(1): 9466