The gut microbiota plays important roles in modulating host metabolism. Previous studies have demonstrated differences in the gut microbiome of T2D and prediabetic individuals compared to healthy individuals, with distinct disease-related microbial profiles being reported in groups of different age and ethnicity. However, confounding factors such as anti-diabetic medication hamper identification of the gut microbial changes in disease development. We used a combination of in-depth metagenomics and metaproteomics analyses of faecal samples from treatment-naïve type 2 diabetic (TN-T2D, n = 77), pre-diabetic (Pre-DM, n = 80), and normal glucose tolerant (NGT, n = 97) individuals to investigate compositional and functional changes of the gut microbiota and the faecal content of microbial and host proteins in Pre-DM and treatment-naïve T2D individuals to elucidate possible host-microbial interplays characterizing different disease stages. We observed distinct differences characterizing the gut microbiota of these three groups and validated several key features in an independent TN-T2D cohort. We also demonstrated that the content of several human antimicrobial peptides and pancreatic enzymes differed in faecal samples between three groups. Our findings suggest a complex, disease stage-dependent interplay between the gut microbiota and the host and point to the value of metaproteomics to gain further insight into interplays between the gut microbiota and the host. FUND: The study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 31601073), the National Key Research and Development Program of China (No. 2017YFC0909703) and the Shenzhen Municipal Government of China (No. JCYJ20170817145809215). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
- Treatment-naïve type 2 diabetes