A human gut microbial gene catalogue established by metagenomic sequencing

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Junjie Qin, Ruiqiang Li, Jeroen Raes, Manimozhiyan Arumugam, Kristoffer Solvsten Burgdorf, Chaysavanh Manichanh, Trine Nielsen, Nicolas Pons, Florence Levenez, Takuji Yamada, Daniel R. Mende, Junhua Li, Junming Xu, Shaochuan Li, Dongfang Li, Jianjun Cao, Bo Wang, Huiqing Liang, Huisong Zheng, Yinlong Xie & 31 others Julien Tap, Patricia Lepage, Marcelo Bertalan Quintanilha dos Santos, Jean-Michel Batto, Torben Hansen, Denis Le Paslier, Allan René Linneberg, H. Bjørn Nielsen, Eric Pelletier, Pierre Renault, Thomas Sicheritz-Ponten, Keith Turner, Hongmei Zhu, Chang Yu, Shengting Li, Min Jian, Yan Zhou, Yingrui Li, Xiuqing Zhang, Songgang Li, Nan Qin, Huanming Yang, Jian Wang, Søren Brunak, Joel Doré, Francisco Guarner, Karsten Kristiansen, Oluf Borbye Pedersen, Julian Parkhill, MetaHIT Consortium, Jun Wang

To understand the impact of gut microbes on human health and well-being it is crucial to assess their genetic potential. Here we describe the Illumina-based metagenomic sequencing, assembly and characterization of 3.3 million non-redundant microbial genes, derived from 576.7 gigabases of sequence, from faecal samples of 124 European individuals. The gene set, approximately 150 times larger than the human gene complement, contains an overwhelming majority of the prevalent (more frequent) microbial genes of the cohort and probably includes a large proportion of the prevalent human intestinal microbial genes. The genes are largely shared among individuals of the cohort. Over 99% of the genes are bacterial, indicating that the entire cohort harbours between 1,000 and 1,150 prevalent bacterial species and each individual at least 160 such species, which are also largely shared. We define and describe the minimal gut metagenome and the minimal gut bacterial genome in terms of functions present in all individuals and most bacteria, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number7285
Pages (from-to)59-65
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Bibliographical note

Keywords: Adult; Bacteria; Cohort Studies; Contig Mapping; Denmark; Feces; Gastrointestinal Tract; Genes, Bacterial; Genes, Essential; Genome, Bacterial; Genomics; Health; Humans; Inflammatory Bowel Diseases; Metagenome; Obesity; Open Reading Frames; Overweight; Sequence Analysis, DNA; Spain

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