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Inflammatory Bowel Disease Linked to Gut Microbiome Community Structure Gradient in Meta-Analysis

A team led by investigators at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the Broad Institute describe specific microbial taxa and microbial community structures that seem to coincide with inflammatory bowel disease across the population for a paper appearing in Genome Biology. Using a statistical framework called "meta-analysis methods with a uniform pipeline for heterogeneity in microbiome studies" (MMUPHin), the researchers analyzed 16S ribosomal RNA sequence data from 5,151 samples collected from almost 2,200 individuals with or without ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease from 10 previous studies. "We found both previously documented and novel microbial links to the disease, with further differentiation among subtypes, phenotypic severity, and treatment effects," they report, noting that although Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis did not show ties to specific, reproducible microbiome-related subtypes, their results point to "a population structure gradient from less to more 'pro-inflammatory' ecological configurations."

The Scan

Germline-Targeting HIV Vaccine Shows Promise in Phase I Trial

A National Institutes of Health-led team reports in Science that a broadly neutralizing antibody HIV vaccine induced bnAb precursors in 97 percent of those given the vaccine.

Study Uncovers Genetic Mutation in Childhood Glaucoma

A study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation ties a heterozygous missense variant in thrombospondin 1 to childhood glaucoma.

Gene Co-Expression Database for Humans, Model Organisms Gets Update

GeneFriends has been updated to include gene and transcript co-expression networks based on RNA-seq data from 46,475 human and 34,322 mouse samples, a new paper in Nucleic Acids Research says.

New Study Investigates Genomics of Fanconi Anemia Repair Pathway in Cancer

A Rockefeller University team reports in Nature that FA repair deficiency leads to structural variants that can contribute to genomic instability.