Exploring the Cystic Fibrosis Lung Microbiome: Making the Most of a Sticky Situation Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Abstract Chronic lower respiratory tract infections are a leading contributor to morbidity and mortality in persons with cystic fibrosis (pwCF). Traditional respiratory tract surveillance culturing has focused on a limited range of classic pathogens; however, comprehensive culture and culture-independent molecular approaches have demonstrated complex communities highly unique to each individual. Microbial community structure evolves through the lifetime of pwCF and is associated with baseline disease state and rates of disease progression including occurrence of pulmonary exacerbations. While molecular analysis of the airway microbiome has provided insight into these dynamics, challenges remain including discerning not only “who is there” but “what they are doing” in relation to disease progression. Moreover, the microbiome can be leveraged as a multi-modal biomarker for both disease activity and prognostication. In this article, we review our evolving understanding of the role these communities play in pwCF and identify challenges in translating microbiome data to clinical practice.

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publication date

  • September 7, 2022