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Realtime Sequencing

Over 100 trillion microbial cells, over ten times the number of human cells, reside in our body niches. They are thought to carry over 100-fold more unique genes than encoded by the human genome. The microbes influence human health and disease.

To decipher the content, diversity and function of the microbial community several studies are underway. Such studies use next generation sequencing to look at the 16S ribosomal RNA gene (rRNA) diversity or use other regions of the genome.

The oral microbiome is comprised of over 600 prevalent taxa at the species level, with distinct subsets predominating at different habitats has a great impact on human health (1-2). The oral cavity is a major gateway to the human body. Food enters the mouth, chewed and mixed with saliva moved to stomach and intestinal tract. Air gets in through the nose and mouth on the way to the trachea and lungs. Microorganisms from the oral cavity have been shown to cause a number of oral infectious diseases, including caries (tooth decay), periodontitis (gum disease), endodontic (root canal) infections, alveolar osteitis (dry socket), and tonsillitis (2). Several other research reports link oral bacteria to a number of other systemic diseases (3), including cardiovascular disease (4), stroke (5), preterm birth (6), diabetes (7), and pneumonia (8).

At the 2015 NGBT meeting we plan to demonstrate the state of sequencing technologies by the studying the oral metagenome from consenting participants in real time during the course of the meeting.

Day 1 (Oct 1st, 2015) - obtain cheek swabs from up to 100 consenting participants
Day 2 (Oct 2st, 2015) - prepare DNA, PCR V3 libraries and sequence
Day 3 (Oct 3rd, 2015) – Analysis and data presentation


  • Zarco, M. F., T. J. Vess, and G. S. Ginsburg. "The oral microbiome in health and disease and the potential impact on personalized dental medicine." Oral diseases 18, no. 2 (2012): 109-120.
  • Dewhirst, Floyd E., Tuste Chen, Jacques Izard, Bruce J. Paster, Anne CR Tanner, Wen-Han Yu, Abirami Lakshmanan, and William G. Wade. "The human oral microbiome." Journal of bacteriology 192, no. 19 (2010): 5002-5017.
  • Seymour, G. J., P. J. Ford, M. P. Cullinan, S. Leishman, and K. Yamazaki. "Relationship between periodontal infections and systemic disease." Clinical Microbiology and Infection 13, no. s4 (2007): 3-10.
  • Beck, James D., and Steven Offenbacher. "Systemic effects of periodontitis: epidemiology of periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease." Journal of periodontology 76, no. 11-s (2005): 2089-2100.
  • Joshipura, K. J., H. C. Hung, E. B. Rimm, W. C. Willett, and A. Ascherio.2003. Periodontal disease, tooth loss, and incidence of ischemic stroke.Stroke 34:47–52.
  • Offenbacher, S., H. L. Jared, P. G. O’Reilly, S. R. Wells, G. E. Salvi, H. P.Lawrence, S. S. Socransky, and J. D. Beck. 1998. Potential pathogenic mechanisms of periodontitis associated pregnancy complications. Ann. Periodontol.3:233–250.
  • Genco, R. J., S. G. Grossi, A. Ho, F. Nishimura, and Y. Murayama. 2005. A proposed model linking inflammation to obesity, diabetes, and periodontal infections. J. Periodontol. 76:2075–2084.
  • Awano, S., T. Ansai, Y. Takata, I. Soh, S. Akifusa, T. Hamasaki, A. Yoshida, K. Sonoki, K. Fujisawa, and T. Takehara. "Oral health and mortality risk from pneumonia in the elderly." Journal of dental research 87, no. 4 (2008): 334-339.

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