Manipulation of saliva-derived microcosm biofilms to resemble dysbiotic subgingival microbiota

Y. Jiang, B.W. Brandt, M.J. Buijs, L. Cheng, R.A.M. Exterkate, W. Crielaard, D.M. Deng

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Periodontitis is a highly prevalent oral inflammatory disease triggered by dysbiotic subgingival microbiota. For the development of microbiome modulators that can reverse the dysbiotic state and reestablish a health-associated microbiota, a high-throughput in vitro multispecies biofilm model is needed. Our aim is to establish a model that resembles a dysbiotic subgingival microbial biofilm by incorporating the major periodontal pathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis into microcosm biofilms cultured from pooled saliva of healthy volunteers. The biofilms were grown for 3, 7, and 10 days and analyzed for their microbial composition by 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing as well as measurement of dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPP4) activity and butyric acid production. The addition of P. gingivalis increased its abundance in saliva-derived microcosm biofilms from 2.7% on day 3 to >50% on day 10, which significantly reduced the Shannon diversity but did not affect the total number of operational taxonomic units (OTUs). The P. gingivalis-enriched biofilms displayed altered microbial composition as revealed by principal-component analysis and reduced interactions among microbial species. Moreover, these biofilms exhibited enhanced DPP4 activity and butyric acid production. In conclusion, by adding P. gingivalis to saliva-derived microcosm biofilms, we established an in vitro pathogenenriched dysbiotic microbiota which resembles periodontitis-associated subgingival microbiota in terms of increased P. gingivalis abundance and higher DPP4 activity and butyric acid production. This model may allow for investigating factors that accelerate or hinder a microbial shift from symbiosis to dysbiosis and for developing microbiome modulation strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere02371-20
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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