Intestinal microbiota composition of children with infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C).

Suskun C., Kilic Ö., Yilmaz Ciftdogan D., Guven S., Karbuz A., Ozkaya Parlakay A., ...More

European journal of pediatrics, vol.181, no.8, pp.3175-3191, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 181 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s00431-022-04494-9
  • Journal Name: European journal of pediatrics
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.3175-3191
  • Keywords: COVID-19, Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, MIS-C, Children, Microbiota, Microbiome, GUT MICROBIOME, IMMUNE HOMEOSTASIS, EGGERTHELLA, DYNAMICS, LINKS, DIET
  • Eskisehir Osmangazi University Affiliated: Yes


Microbiota composition may play a role in the development, prognosis, or post-infection of COVID-19. There are studies evaluating the microbiota composition at the time of diagnosis and during the course of COVID-19, especially in adults, while studies in children are limited and no study available in children with multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). This study was planned to compare intestinal microbiota composition in children diagnosed with MIS-C and acute COVID-19 infection with healthy children. In this prospective multicenter study, 25 children diagnosed with MIS-C, 20 with COVID-19 infection, and 19 healthy children were included. Intestinal microbiota composition was evaluated by 16 s rRNA gene sequencing. We observed changes of diversity, richness, and composition of intestinal microbiota in MIS-C cases compared to COVID-19 cases and in the healthy controls. The Shannon index was higher in the MIS-C group than the healthy controls (p < 0.01). At phylum level, in the MIS-C group, a significantly higher relative abundance of Bacteroidetes and lower abundance of Firmicutes was found compared to the control group. Intestinal microbiota composition changed in MIS-C cases compared to COVID-19 and healthy controls, and Faecalibacterium prausnitzii decreased; Bacteroides uniformis, Bacteroides plebeius, Clostridium ramosum, Eubacterium dolichum, Eggerthella lenta, Bacillus thermoamylovorans, Prevotella tannerae, and Bacteroides coprophilus were dominant in children with MIS-C. At species level, we observed decreased Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, and increased Eubacterium dolichum, Eggerthella lenta, and Bacillus thermoamylovorans in children with MIS-C and increased Bifidobacterium adolescentis and Dorea formicigenerasus in the COVID-19 group. Our study is the first to evaluate the microbiota composition in MIS-C cases. There is a substantial change in the composition of the gut microbiota: (1) reduction of E prausnitzii in children with MIS-C and COVID-19; (2) an increase of Eggerthella lenta which is related with autoimmunity; and (3) the predominance of E. dolichum is associated with metabolic dysfunctions and obesity in children with MIS-C.