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Thursday, August 16, 2012

Let's Visit the Stomach Gut of a Pregnant Woman

Posted by on Thu, Aug 16, 2012 at 8:26 AM

Scientific American:

The study looked at women in Finland. The women’s microbial makeup changed dramatically between the first and third trimesters. The array of microbes in the gut went from looking normal in the first three months of a pregnancy to resembling what’s found in patients suffering from metabolic disease in the last three.
The reason for this change is not understood, but scientists suspect it has something to do with the immune system. And now that you are reading this closing sentence, know that I'm ending this post without saying a mean thing about pregnant women.

 

Comments (7) RSS

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1
Not to be pedantic, but the article refers to microbiology in the gut, not the stomach. You are unlikely to find bacteria in the stomach unless it is Helicobacter pylori.
Posted by blibbler on August 16, 2012 at 9:27 AM · Report this
2
Interesting! I wonder if any of this had to do with gastric motility--digestion slows way down in pregnancy...leaving food in the gastrointestinal tract for longer which may be beneficial for the bacteria seen in metabolic disorder (difference in nutrient availability and pH can result in different growth rates for one bacteria vs. another)
Posted by microbiologylovinrn on August 16, 2012 at 9:27 AM · Report this
Max Solomon 3
well, it is a 7 lb. parasite growing in your body. it makes sense your immune system is going to have something to say about it.
Posted by Max Solomon on August 16, 2012 at 9:40 AM · Report this
onion 4
charles it isn't that you always say "mean" things about women, it's that you weirdly focus on the negative (or the sexual).
"diseased" guts of women = negative. it somehow fits your pattern.
but your clip IS interesting. the lengths the pregnant body goes to to keep on accepting that foreign fetus...by beating that immune system into submission.
however i wonder if the effect is only immune system related. digestion gets all the heck messed up during pregnancy, and it isn't just due to microbes.
Posted by onion on August 16, 2012 at 9:41 AM · Report this
dwightmoodyforgetsthings 5
Pregnant women are smug
And there's something wrong
with their stomach bug.....
s.
Posted by dwightmoodyforgetsthings http://www.reddit.com/r/spaceclop on August 16, 2012 at 9:47 AM · Report this
TVDinner 6
I wonder if this relates to the strange phenomenon of gestational diabetes.
Posted by TVDinner http:// on August 16, 2012 at 10:25 AM · Report this
stirwise 7
@1: thank you for clarifying. That was bothering me, too.
Also, it could have "something" to do with the immune system, but it could also have something to do with the change in carbohydrates in the gut during pregnancy, a known phenomenon. Microbes latch on to the intestinal mucosa by grabbing onto carbohydrate chains. Pregnancy is known to alter the production of those carbohydrates, which in turn changes the makeup of the gut microbiota. There's evidence this same change is happening throughout a woman's regular hormone cycles, not just during pregnancy. While all this affects infection and disease, it's not really "immunology" in the strict sense.
Posted by stirwise on August 16, 2012 at 11:27 AM · Report this

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