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Linking Perturbations to Temporal Changes in Diversity, Stability, and Compositions of Neonatal Calf Gut Microbiota: Prediction of Diarrhea

Source: Feed Research Institute

Recently, a paper entitled “Linking Perturbations to Temporal Changes in Diversity, Stability, and Compositions of Neonatal Calf Gut Microbiota: Prediction of Diarrhea” was published online by The ISME Journal. In the paper, Feed Research Institute (FRI) researchers collaborated with researchers from the University of Alberta and the University of Guelph, using the veal calf as an animal model to represent young ruminants. Researchers reported that increase in diversity, stability, and taxa-function robustness of gut microbiota over time was a feature of ‘healthy’ (non-diarrheic) calves during early life. Research also showed that therapeutic antimicrobials not only delayed the temporal development of diversity stability, diminished that of taxa-function robustness, but also up-regulated four predicted genes associated with antimicrobial resistance in gut microbiota of veal calves. Moreover, Random Forest machine learning algorithm-based revealed that Trueperella, Streptococcus, Dorea, uncultured Lachnospiraceae, Ruminococcus 2, and Erysipelatoclostridium may be key microbial markers that can differentiate between ‘healthy’ and ‘unhealthy’ (diarrheic) gut microbiota and predict early life diarrhea with an accuracy of 84.3%. The findings of this study suggest that diarrhea in veal calves may be predicted by the shift in early life gut microbiota, which may provide an opportunity for early intervention to improve calf health with reduced usage of antimicrobials.

 

The research was supported by the Agricultural Science and Technology Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences and Chinese Scholarship Council.