Ann Neurol. 2016 Sep;80(3):443-7. doi: 10.1002/ana.24718. Epub 2016 Aug 4.

Gut microbiome analysis in neuromyelitis optica reveals overabundance of Clostridium perfringens.

Cree B, Spencer CM, Varrin-Doyer M, Baranzini SE, Zamvil SS.


T cells from neuromyelitis optica (NMO) patients, which recognize the immunodominant epitope of aquaporin-4, exhibit Th17 polarization and cross-react with a homologous sequence of a Clostridium perfringens adenosine triphosphate-binding cassette transporter. Therefore, this commensal microbe might participate in NMO pathogenesis. We examined the gut microbiome by PhyloChip G3 from 16 NMO patients, 16 healthy controls (HC), and 16 multiple sclerosis patients. A significant difference in the abundance of several microbial communities was observed between NMO and HC (Adonis test, p = 0.001). Strikingly, C. perfringens was overrepresented in NMO (p = 5.24 × 10(-8) ). These observations support a potential role for C. perfringens in NMO pathogenesis. Ann Neurol 2016;80:443-447.
© 2016 The Authors. Annals of Neurology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of American Neurological Association.

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