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Cesareans weaken gut microbiota and increase risk of allergies
Date:8/8/2013

Children who came into the world by Caesarean section are more often affected by allergies than those born in the natural way. The reason for this may be that they have a less diverse gut microbiota, according to a study by universities in Sweden and Scotland.

The researchers have followed gut macrobiota development in 24 children up to the age of two in the Swedish provinces of stergtland and Smland, nine delivered through Caesarean and 15 delivered naturally, through vaginal birth. They used a type of molecular biology analysis, which gives a broad overview of the varieties of bacteria present in the intestines.

The results are presented in the scientific journal Gut, with Anders Andersson of the KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Science for Life Laboratory as the senior author. Other researchers in the study come from Linkping University, Karolinska Institutet (KI), rebro University and the University of Glasgow, Scotland.

Those that were delivered by Caesarean section had a less diverse gut microbiota during their first two years of life than those born vaginally. Particularly clear was the low diversity among the group Bacteroidetes that, according to earlier observations of the research groups, are particularly linked to protection against allergies. Thus, these children may run greater risk of developing allergies, but diabetes and irritable bowel syndrome are also more common among children born by Caesarean.

"Sometimes Caesarean sections are necessary. But it is important that both expectant mothers and doctors are aware that such a delivery may affect the child's health," says Maria Jenmalm, professor of Experimental Allergology at Linkping University and one of the authors of the article.

Everything indicates that right up until the moment of birth the child's gut is completely sterile. Colonisation by many different bacteria is believed to be necessary for the immune system to develop a
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Contact: Maria Jenmalm
maria.jenmalm@liu.se
46-010-103-4101
Linkping University
Source:Eurekalert

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