Microbial Profiles of Cirrhosis in the Human Small Intestine


Purpose of Review

The aim of this review is to summarize the recent literature on associations of small intestinal microbial and bile acid profiles with liver cirrhosis and its complications.

Recent Findings

Recent studies into the duodenal microbiome of patients with cirrhosis have linked the microbiome to certain etiologies of chronic liver disease as well as complications of cirrhosis. In particular, microbial differences in the duodenum of patients with cirrhosis have been linked to the presence of hepatic encephalopathy and varices.


While the fecal microbiome of patients with liver cirrhosis is well characterized, the small intestinal microbiome of cirrhotic patients is an active area of research. This review focuses on the current understanding of the small intestinal microbiome in human cirrhosis as well as future directions of the field.

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Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Correspondence to Shehnaz K. Hussain.

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Dong, T.S., Jacobs, J.P. & Hussain, S.K. Microbial Profiles of Cirrhosis in the Human Small Intestine. Curr Gastroenterol Rep 21, 50 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11894-019-0717-2

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  • Microbiome
  • Bile acids
  • Cirrhosis
  • Hepatic encephalopathy
  • Portal hypertension
  • Ascites