The oral microbiome profile and biomarker in Chinese type 2 diabetes mellitus patients



Oral microbiota maintains a dynamic ecological balance with the host. However, a disruption in this balance can lead to oral diseases such as dental caries and periodontitis. Several studies suggest differences in microbial composition in the oral cavity between patients with T2DM and nondiabetic patients. However, there is inadequate oral microbiome-related data from Chinese patients with T2DM, and the difference in microbiome profile between Chinese patients with T2DM and other ethnicities needs to be investigated further.


Oral swab samples were collected from 280 adult patients with T2DM and 162 healthy controls. Illumina sequencing was performed on oral samples targeting V1–V2 region of 16S rRNA gene and sequence analysis was carried in the QIIME.


Patients with T2DM and healthy cohorts exhibited distinct oral microbial clusters based on principal coordinate analysis (PCoA). The Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes ratio increased in T2DM and T2DM patients presented significantly higher numbers of Neisseria, Streptococcus, Haemophilus, and Pseudomonas genera, and lower numbers of Acinetobacteria compared with healthy controls. When compared with the available published data of oral and gut microbiome associated with T2DM patients, we found the ratio of Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes and the abundance of Haemophilus could be a specific microbial biomarker in Chinese patients with T2DM.


Our study revealed a significant difference in the oral microbiota between T2DM patients and healthy individuals. We identified 25 taxa, including 6 genera, with significant difference in abundance between T2DM and healthy controls.

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The study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, under contract No. 31471202 (L.Z.), 81570712 (Z.W.); the Shandong Provincial Key Research and Development Program under contract No. 2016YYSP009 (L.Z.), 2016GSF201009 (Z.W.); Natural Science Outstanding Youth Foundation of Shandong Province, under contract No. JQ201519 (Q.Z.); Major Science and Technology Innovation Project of Shandong Province, under contract No. 2018CXGC1218 and No. 2018CXGC1219; Weihai Technique Extension Project under contract No. 2016GNS023 (L.Z.), L.Z. was also supported by the TaiShan Scholars Program of Shandong Province (No. tshw20120206) and TaiShan Industrial Experts Program (No. tscy20190612).

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L.Z. and Q.Z. designed the study. B.C., Z.W., J.W., X.S., and J.Y. performed measurements and data analysis. Z.W., Q.Z., and X.S. obtained samples and clinical details. B.C. and J.W. wrote the manuscript. All authors have read and critically revised the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Qunye Zhang or Lei Zhang.

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All procedures performed in the above studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institution and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki along with its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Chen, B., Wang, Z., Wang, J. et al. The oral microbiome profile and biomarker in Chinese type 2 diabetes mellitus patients. Endocrine 68, 564–572 (2020).

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  • Oral microbiota
  • Dysbiosis
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus