An update on the current understanding of the infant skin microbiome and research challenges

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Multiple factors contribute to establishment of skin microbial communities in early life, with perturbations in these ecosystems impacting health. This review provides an update on methods used to profile the skin microbiome and how this is helping enhance our understanding of infant skin microbial communities, including factors that influence composition and disease risk. We also provide insights into new interventional studies and treatments in this area. However, it is apparent that there are still research bottlenecks that include overreliance on high-income countries for skin microbiome 'surveys', many studies still focus solely on the bacterial microbiota, and also technical issues related to the lower microbial biomass of skin sites. These points link to pertinent open-research questions, such as how the whole infant skin microbiome interacts and how microbial-associated functions shape infant skin health and immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102364
JournalCurrent Opinion in Microbiology
Early online date14 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023

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