Comparison of the faecal microbial populations of patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome with sympton-free age- and sex-matched controls

A. Kassinen, E. Malinen, T. Rinttilä, K. Kajander, Jaana Mättö, L. Krogius, Maria Saarela, Riitta Korpela, Airi Palva

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientific


Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal (GI) disorder of unknown etiology. In previous studies, indications of the GI tract microbiota abnormalities have been obtained but the significance of the GI tract bacteria in IBS remains inadequately studied. The aim of our study was to update the current knowledge concerning the putative role of GI microbiota in the IBS and to apply real-time PCR for comparing the faecal microbiota of IBS patients with controls. For this purpose, 27 IBS patients fulfilling the Rome II criteria and 22 control subjects devoid of GI disorders were recruited. The patients were divided into diarrhoea-, constipation- or alternating type - IBS. Each patient and control subject gave three faecal samples at different time points of the investigation (0, 3 and 6 months). For accurate and precise detection and quantification of 20 different bacterial species or groups, real-time PCR with TaqMan or SYBR Green I chemistry were applied. The real-time PCR assays had a coverage of approximately 300 species. As a result, variation in the normal microbiota was observed between individuals. When Kruskall-Wallis signed rank analysis was used for group-wise comparison of the subject groups, significant differences were observed. In addition, no indications of the presence of Helicobacter spp. or C. difficile were found in either of the subject groups, but one case of Campylobacter jejuni was diagnosed. As a conclusion, the faecal microbiota of the IBS subgroups seem to differ from each other, which is not unexpected due to differences of the symptoms experienced by these patients. The comparison of the results from various studies describing alterations of faecal microbiota in IBS is difficult due to different IBS criteria used and the development of bacterial taxonomy. In conclusion, this study supports the earlier suggestions of the changed GI microbiota in IBS.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the New Perspectives of Probiotics
Publication statusPublished - 2004
MoE publication typeB3 Non-refereed article in conference proceedings
EventNew Perspectives of Probiotics - Kosice, Slovakia
Duration: 15 Sept 200419 Sept 2004


ConferenceNew Perspectives of Probiotics


  • irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • real-time PCR
  • gastrointestinal (GI) microbiota


Dive into the research topics of 'Comparison of the faecal microbial populations of patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome with sympton-free age- and sex-matched controls'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this