Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 63, Issue 11, pp 2923–2929 | Cite as

Differences Between the Intestinal Lumen Microbiota of Aberrant Crypt Foci (ACF)-Bearing and Non-bearing Rats

  • Xiuli Xiao
  • Wenbo Long
  • Tingyu Huang
  • Tian Xia
  • Rupei Ye
  • Yong Liu
  • Hanan LongEmail author
Original Article



Multiple factors including host–microbiota interaction could contribute to the conversion of healthy mucosa to sporadic precancerous lesions. An imbalance of the gut microbiota may be a cause or consequence of this process.


The goal was to investigate and analyze the composition of gut microbiota during the genesis of precancerous lesions of colorectal cancer.


To analyze the composition of gut microbiota in the genesis of precancerous lesions, a rat model of 1, 2-dimethylhydrazine (DMH)-induced aberrant crypt foci (ACF) was established. The feces of these rats and healthy rats were collected for 16S rRNA sequencing.


The diversity and density of the rat intestinal microbiota were significantly different between ACF-bearing and non-bearing group. ACF were induced in rats treated with DMH and showed increased expression of the inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-8, and TNF-α. Firmicutes was the most predominant phylum in both ACF-bearing and non-bearing group, followed by Bacteroidetes. Interestingly, although the density of Bacteroidetes decreased from the fifth week to the 17th week in both groups, it was significantly reduced in ACF-bearing group at the 13th week (P < 0.01). At the genus level, no significant difference was observed in the most predominant genus, Lactobacillus. Instead, Bacteroides and Prevotella were significantly less abundant (P < 0.01), while Akkermansia was significantly more abundant (P < 0.05) in ACF-bearing group at the 13th week.


Imbalance of the intestinal microbiota existed between ACF-bearing and non-bearing rats, which could be used as biomarker to predict the genesis of precancerous lesions in the gut.


Aberrant crypt foci (ACF) Intestinal microbiota Rat model Precancerous lesions 


Author’s contribution

XLX and HAL conceived the project. TYH, TX, RPY, and YL performed the experiments. WBL and XLX analyzed the data and wrote/edited the manuscript.


This Project is supported by the “Project of special Fund for science and technology of Sichuan” (Number: LY-55).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Authors confirm that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

10620_2018_5180_MOESM1_ESM.xlsx (4 mb)
Supplemental Table 1 Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) produced bysequencing16S RNA genes of rats. NGS, non-bearing group stool; AGS, ACF-bearing group stool (XLSX 4108 kb)
10620_2018_5180_MOESM2_ESM.xlsx (37 kb)
Supplemental Table 2 Data of relative contributions of dominant phyla and genera in the intestinal lumen microbiota. NGS, non-bearing group stool; AGS, ACF-bearing group stool. “Others” represents the unclassified bacteria (XLSX 36 kb)
10620_2018_5180_MOESM3_ESM.docx (25 kb)
Supplemental Table 3 Relative abundance, median, and range of the predominant genera in the gut microbiota of ACF-bearing and non-bearing group.“Others” represents the unclassified bacteria (DOCX 24 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiuli Xiao
    • 1
  • Wenbo Long
    • 1
  • Tingyu Huang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Tian Xia
    • 2
  • Rupei Ye
    • 1
  • Yong Liu
    • 1
  • Hanan Long
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of PathologyThe Affiliated Hospital of Southwest Medical UniversityLuzhouChina
  2. 2.Department of PathologyThe First People’s Hospital of NeijiangNeijiangChina
  3. 3.Department of Science and TechnologySouthwest Medical UniversityLuzhouChina

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