Ken Blount1*, Courtney Jones1, Dana Walsh1, Carlos Gonzalez2 and William D. Shannon2
1Rebiotix Inc., a Ferring Company, Roseville, MN, United States, 2BioRankings LLC, St. Louis, MO, United States
The human gut microbiota are important to health and wellness, and disrupted microbiota homeostasis, or “dysbiosis,” can cause or contribute to many gastrointestinal disease states. Dysbiosis can be caused by many factors, most notably antibiotic treatment. To correct dysbiosis and restore healthier microbiota, several investigational microbiota-based live biotherapeutic products (LBPs) are in formal clinical development. To better guide and refine LBP development and to better understand and manage the risks of antibiotic administration, biomarkers that distinguish post-antibiotic dysbiosis from healthy microbiota are needed. Here we report the development of a prototype Microbiome Health Index for post-Antibiotic dysbiosis (MHI-A).
MHI-A was developed and validated using longitudinal gut microbiome data from participants in clinical trials of RBX2660 and RBX7455 – investigational LBPs in development for reducing recurrent Clostridioides difficile infections (rCDI). The MHI-A algorithm relates the relative abundances of microbiome taxonomic classes that changed the most after RBX2660 or RBX7455 treatment, that strongly correlated with clinical response, and that reflect biological mechanisms believed important to rCDI. The diagnostic utility of MHI-A was reinforced using publicly available microbiome data from healthy or antibiotic-treated populations.
MHI-A has high accuracy to distinguish post-antibiotic dysbiosis from healthy microbiota. MHI-A values were consistent across multiple healthy populations and were significantly shifted by antibiotic treatments known to alter microbiota compositions, shifted less by microbiota-sparing antibiotics. Clinical response to RBX2660 and RBX7455 correlated with a shift of MHI-A from dysbiotic to healthy values.
MHI-A is a promising biomarker of post-antibiotic dysbiosis and subsequent restoration. MHI-A may be useful for rank-ordering the microbiota-disrupting effects of antibiotics and as a pharmacodynamic measure of microbiota restoration.
Microbiota-based therapy, Placebo, Microbiome, Resistome, Clostridioides difficile intestinal microbiota, dysbiosis, antibiotics, biomarker, Clostridioides difficile infection