US Immigration Westernizes the Human Gut Microbiome

Pajau Vangay, Abigail J. Johnson, Tonya L. Ward, Gabriel A. Al-Ghalith, Robin R. Shields-Cutler, Benjamin M. Hillmann, Sarah K. Lucas, Lalit K. Beura, Emily A. Thompson, Lisa M. Till, Rodolfo Batres, Bwei Paw, Shannon L. Pergament, Pimpanitta Saenyakul, Mary Xiong, Austin D. Kim, Grant Kim, David Masopust, Eric C. Martens, Chaisiri AngkurawaranonRose McGready, Purna C. Kashyap, Kathleen A. Culhane-Pera, Dan Knights

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Scopus citations

Abstract

Many US immigrant populations develop metabolic diseases post immigration, but the causes are not well understood. Although the microbiome plays a role in metabolic disease, there have been no studies measuring the effects of US immigration on the gut microbiome. We collected stool, dietary recalls, and anthropometrics from 514 Hmong and Karen individuals living in Thailand and the United States, including first- and second-generation immigrants and 19 Karen individuals sampled before and after immigration, as well as from 36 US-born European American individuals. Using 16S and deep shotgun metagenomic DNA sequencing, we found that migration from a non-Western country to the United States is associated with immediate loss of gut microbiome diversity and function in which US-associated strains and functions displace native strains and functions. These effects increase with duration of US residence and are compounded by obesity and across generations. Migration from a non-western nation to the United States is found to be associated with a loss in gut microbiome diversity and function in a manner that may predispose individuals to metabolic disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)962-972.e10
JournalCell
Volume175
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank all of the participants in this study. We also thank the members of our community advisory boards, who provided critical feedback throughout the study: Bu Bu, Jamiey Cha, Yoha Christiansen, Pa Chua Vang, Duachi Her, Ku Ku Paw Lynn, Mayly Lochungvu, Mudah Takoni, Aye Mi San, Yeng Moua, Ko Nay Oo, Donna Vue Lee, Houa Vue-Her, Pakou Xiong, and Shoua Yang. Our work in Thailand would not have been possible without Ntxawm Lis, Yi Lis, Blooming Zion, Htoo Lay Paw, Moo Kho Paw, See Thoj, and Wirachon Yangyuenkun. We also thank Nurul Quratulaini Abd Salim Nast, Dominique Sabas, and Max Abramson for their assistance in the lab. We thank Ryan Hunter for his advice and assistance with planning. This work was supported by the University of Minnesota Clinical and Translational Science Institute ; the University of Minnesota Healthy Foods, Healthy Lives Institute ; the University of Minnesota Office of Diversity ; and the Graduate School at the University of Minnesota .

Funding Information:
We thank all of the participants in this study. We also thank the members of our community advisory boards, who provided critical feedback throughout the study: Bu Bu, Jamiey Cha, Yoha Christiansen, Pa Chua Vang, Duachi Her, Ku Ku Paw Lynn, Mayly Lochungvu, Mudah Takoni, Aye Mi San, Yeng Moua, Ko Nay Oo, Donna Vue Lee, Houa Vue-Her, Pakou Xiong, and Shoua Yang. Our work in Thailand would not have been possible without Ntxawm Lis, Yi Lis, Blooming Zion, Htoo Lay Paw, Moo Kho Paw, See Thoj, and Wirachon Yangyuenkun. We also thank Nurul Quratulaini Abd Salim Nast, Dominique Sabas, and Max Abramson for their assistance in the lab. We thank Ryan Hunter for his advice and assistance with planning. This work was supported by the University of Minnesota Clinical and Translational Science Institute; the University of Minnesota Healthy Foods, Healthy Lives Institute; the University of Minnesota Office of Diversity; and the Graduate School at the University of Minnesota.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Inc.

Copyright:
Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Bacteriodes
  • Prevotella
  • immigrant health
  • immigration
  • metagenomics
  • microbiome
  • microbiota
  • obesity
  • refugee health

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