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Scientists at Helsinki University and CARe publish collaborative work in Nature Communications

In the study published today in Nature Communications, potential sources of antibiotic resistance genes in the infant gut were investigated by metagenomic sequencing of breast milk as well as infant and maternal gut microbiomes.

The authors find that fecal ARG and mobile genetic element profiles of infants are more similar to those of their own mothers than to those of unrelated mothers. Mobile genetic elements in mothers’ breast milk are also shared with their own infants. The results suggest that infants inherit the legacy of past antibiotic consumption of their mothers via transmission of genes.


Pärnänen K, Karkman A, Hultman J, Lyra C, Bengtsson-Palme J, Larsson DGJ, Rautava S, Salminen S, Kumar H, Satokari R, Isolauri E, Virta M. (2018). Maternal gut and breast milk microbiota affect infant gut antibiotic resistome and mobile genetic elements. Nature Communications. Link to article: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-06393-w