Gut microbiome could predict prognosis of rheumatoid arthritis patients, study finds

Billions of microorganisms in our bodies, including bacteria, fungi, parasites, and viruses, make up the human microbiome. According to a recent study published in Genome Medicine, the gut microbiome of a patient with rheumatoid arthritis can indicate whether the condition will improve over time.

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic used data from the gut microbiome and artificial intelligence to predict clinical outcomes with 90% accuracy.

“There is microbiome on the skin, in the lungs, everywhere,” said Dr. Bob Lahita, director of the Institute of Autoimmune and Rheumatic Diseases at St. Joseph Health and author of forthcoming book “Immunity Strong “at CBSN. “And they stimulate the immune system. They are actually involved in the development of our nervous system and our brain and they are the main source of vitamins, like vitamin K and vitamin B. They also protect our intestines from infections and organisms in our blood. “

For patients with rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic autoimmune disease that causes inflammation in the body, Lahita said that probiotics in the gut “are really, really important in controlling – believe it or not – progress. of this disease “.

The researchers collected two stool samples from 32 rheumatoid arthritis patients approximately 6 to 12 months apart, and different microbiome traits were discovered for the patients who showed clinical improvement and those who did not. not done.

The study could change future treatments for rheumatoid arthritis, Lahita said.

“And we just learned about it,” he said, adding that researchers and doctors could potentially eliminate specific strains of bacteria in the gut.

Many people already take prebiotics and probiotics to improve their health, or both.

“Prebiotics, prepare your gut for the proper organisms in the future – and they claim it’s a real boon to their health. And the second is probiotics that a lot of people take, like yogurt and other types. seeding bacteria, which they can use to make their bowels more efficient, “Lahita said.” And all of that has an effect on your disease. “

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