Landscapes of bacterial and metabolic signatures and their interaction in major depressive disorders

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Science Advances  02 Dec 2020:
Vol. 6, no. 49, eaba8555
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aba8555


Gut microbiome disturbances have been implicated in major depressive disorder (MDD). However, little is known about how the gut virome, microbiome, and fecal metabolome change, and how they interact in MDD. Here, using whole-genome shotgun metagenomic and untargeted metabolomic methods, we identified 3 bacteriophages, 47 bacterial species, and 50 fecal metabolites showing notable differences in abundance between MDD patients and healthy controls (HCs). Patients with MDD were mainly characterized by increased abundance of the genus Bacteroides and decreased abundance of the genera Blautia and Eubacterium. These multilevel omics alterations generated a characteristic MDD coexpression network. Disturbed microbial genes and fecal metabolites were consistently mapped to amino acid (γ-aminobutyrate, phenylalanine, and tryptophan) metabolism. Furthermore, we identified a combinatorial marker panel that robustly discriminated MDD from HC individuals in both the discovery and validation sets. Our findings provide a deep insight into understanding of the roles of disturbed gut ecosystem in MDD.

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