Title: 0170 - Multi-kingdom, Strain-level Microbiome Associated With Dental Caries in Children


Nezar Al-hebshi (Presenter)
Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry

Sumant Puri, Temple University
Marisol Tellez, Temple University
Jennifer Hill, Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry
Amid Ismail, Temple University Kornberg School of Dentistry


Objectives: Studies on the microbiome associated with dental caries have relied on 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, which is associated with PCR biases, hardly offers species-level classification and allows only for exploring the bacteriome. The objective of this study was to comprehensively characterize the composition of the multi-kingdom microbiome associated with dental caries in children at the strain-level.

Methods: Thirty children 6-10 years old were recruited: 10 caries-free, 10 with early non-cavitated lesions and 10 with advanced cavitated lesions. Whole-mouth, supragingival plaque samples, avoiding the carious lesions, were collected and subjected to DNA extraction and gunshot whole metagenome sequencing. Data analysis including establishment of microbial profiles at the species and strain levels, diversity statistics and PCoA was performed using COSMOSID's propriety genome databases and bioinformatics package. Differentially abundant taxa were identified using LefSe.

Results: A total of 737 bacterial strains, representing 409 species and 94 genera, in addition to 32 phages, 2 viruses, 2 fungi and 2 protozoa were identified. Only bacteria, however, showed association with dental caries. Prevotella spp., Veillonella spp., Actinomyces spp., Atopobium spp., Oribacterium spp. and Lachnoanaerobaculum spp. showed significantly strong association with caries status and stage. S. mutans showed similar trends but they did not stand adjustment for multiple comparisons. Streptococcus sp. AS14 and Treponema lecithinolyticum were associated with being caries-free. For several species, particular strains accounted for association; furthermore, strains within the same species in certain cases showed differential associations. For example, Streptococcus mitis biovar 2 strain SK95 was significantly more abundant in the caries group, while strain F0392 was enriched in the caries groups, which resulted in showing no association at the species level.

Conclusions: This is the first study to demonstrate an association between the microbiome and dental caries at the strain-level. This may have important implications for control of the disease, e.g. vaccination or replacement therapy.

Disclosure Statement:
The submitter must disclose the names of the organizations with which any author have a relationship, the nature of the relationship, and the clinical or research area involved. The following is submitted: NONE

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