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Highly premature infants are susceptible to serious infections such as necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) and late-onset blood stream infections (BSIs).
NEC is a poorly understood, potentially life-threatening bowel disorder. It is thought that bacteria proliferating abnormally in the bowel may play an important part in its cause, but no single pathogen has yet been identified.
BSIs are commonly caused by gut bacteria. As the highly premature gut is fragile and has increased permeability, poor motility and decreased immune defences, localised inflammation caused by abnormal bacterial growth may allow 'bystander' microbes to translocate through the gut into the blood stream leading to systemic infection.
We will collect daily faecal samples from premature (<32 weeks) infants in the intensive care unit from the day of birth until they are discharged. By using newly developed molecular detection techniques we aim to define more precisely than has ever previously been attempted, all the species of bacteria present in the faeces. This will enable comparison of the pre-morbid and post-morbid intestinal microbiota (all the bacteria in the gut) in premature neonates.
In a small proportion of infants who develop NEC, surgery will be required as part of treatment of the condition. In these infants we will seek consent to collect a small part of the diseased bowel which has been removed. Similar analysis will be performed on these samples. The analysis of the tissue samples will give us an indication of how well the faeces act as a proxy for the intestinal microbiota.
In this ecological study of the evolution of the intestinal microbiota in preterm infants, by comparing samples from babies who develop NEC or late-onset BSI with those of well babies we will be able to look for differences characteristic of the conditions. This information will help aid design of prevention or treatment strategies.
Observational Model: Ecologic or Community, Time Perspective: Prospective
Premature Intestinal Microbiota
Imperial College London
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Imperial College London
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:14:38-0400
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A type of cardiac arrhythmia with premature contractions of the HEART VENTRICLES. It is characterized by the premature QRS complex on ECG that is of abnormal shape and great duration (generally >129 msec). It is the most common form of all cardiac arrhythmias. Premature ventricular complexes have no clinical significance except in concurrence with heart diseases.
Onset of OBSTETRIC LABOR before term (TERM BIRTH) but usually after the FETUS has become viable. In humans, it occurs sometime during the 29th through 38th week of PREGNANCY. TOCOLYSIS inhibits premature labor and can prevent the BIRTH of premature infants (INFANT, PREMATURE).
The premature cessation of menses (MENSTRUATION) when the last menstrual period occurs in a woman under the age of 40. It is due to the depletion of OVARIAN FOLLICLES. Premature MENOPAUSE can be caused by diseases; OVARIECTOMY; RADIATION; chemicals; and chromosomal abnormalities.
A type of cardiac arrhythmia with premature atrial contractions or beats caused by signals originating from ectopic atrial sites. The ectopic signals may or may not conduct to the HEART VENTRICLES. Atrial premature complexes are characterized by premature P waves on ECG which are different in configuration from the P waves generated by the normal pacemaker complex in the SINOATRIAL NODE.
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