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Some nose, throat bacteria less likely to develop into flu: Study

IANS  |  New York 

US researchers have identified a cluster of nose and throat that made their hosts less likely to get

The researchers from (UM) looked at samples of nose and throat and used to identify which were present.

Analysing the bacterial composition across all samples, they found five clusters.

After taking into account other known factors that could affect an individual's susceptibility to influenza, such as age, exposure to tobacco, crowded and vaccination, the researchers then looked to see if individuals with a given cluster were less likely to get

"We looked at who had which cluster and whether it makes a difference on whether they got influenza, and it does," said Betsy Foxman, at UM.

"That's the exciting thing about it. It tells us if you have this bacterial community, you have lower risk for getting the That's big news because it really hasn't been shown before."

However, the findings published in journal also bring new questions.

"Is it really possible to push someone's microbiome in a way that would make a difference? Is it possible that we could tell people - 'Here's your microbiome pill?'" Foxman said, adding that "It's a very long road and we're at the beginning."

Researchers hope that similar studies can be done in a different population and possibly follow them longer for

"We know we are always going to need new but this way we could hold on to them longer and, presumably, if we could intervene in this way there would be fewer side effects," Foxman said.

For the study, the team enrolled 717 participants from 144 households. members of individuals with confirmed were recruited for the study and followed for 13 days or until they developed influenza, whichever came first. They included only the 537 individuals who tested negative for at the beginning of the study.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, January 13 2019. 12:12 IST