The modulation of gut microbiota composition in the pathophysiology of gestational diabetes mellitus: A systematic review

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 Recent studies have placed a great deal of emphasis on the importance of the microbiome, especially the link between the alteration of gut microbiota and multiple associated diseases. Gut microbiota changes in pregnancy have a significant impact on metabolic function and may contribute to gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Although GDM carries long-term health risks that affect women, there are also significant short-and severe long-term consequences for the offspring. Regardless, there is a notable lack of research focusing on the impact of prominent microorganisms involved in the development of GDM. A comprehensive review was conducted to gather relevant data on the types of microorganisms that have been associated with GDM. The review found that certain microorganisms impact the onset and progression of GDM during pregnancy. Several bacterial strains associated with GDM are influenced by a diet high in fat and low in fiber. Therefore, integrating the idea of a microbiome-based individualized dietary intervention into gestational diabetes management may be incredibly beneficial. Abstract: General gut microbial dysbiosis in diabetes mellitus, including gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), has been reported in a large body of literature. However, evidence investigating the association between specific taxonomic classes and GDM is lacking. Thus, we performed a systematic review of peer-reviewed observational studies and trials conducted among women with GDM within the last ten years using standard methodology. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) quality assessment tools were used to assess the quality of the included studies. Fourteen studies investigating microbial interactions with GDM were found to be relevant and included in this review. The synthesis of literature findings demonstrates that Bacteroidetes, Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, and Actinobacteria phyla, such as Desulfovibrio, Ruminococcaceae, P. distasonis, Enterobacteriaceae, Collinsella, and Prevotella, were positively associated with GDM. In contrast, Bifidobacterium and Faecalibacterium, which produce butyrate, are negatively associated with GDM. These bacteria were associated with inflammation, adiposity, and glucose intolerance in women with GDM. Lack of good diet management demonstrated the alteration of gut microbiota and its impact on GDM glucose homeostasis. The majority of the studies were of good quality. Therefore, there is great potential to incorporate personalized medicine targeting microbiome modulation through dietary intervention in the management of GDM.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1027
Number of pages16
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • 16S rRNA
  • Gestational diabetes mellitus
  • Metagenomics
  • Microbiome

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