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    Dysbiosis of Gut Microbiota Is an Independent Risk Factor of Stroke-Associated Pneumonia: A Chinese Pilot Study. Xia Geng-Hong,Zhang Ming-Si,Wu Qi-Heng,Wang Hui-Di,Zhou Hong-Wei,He Yan,Yin Jia Frontiers in cellular and infection microbiology Background and Purpose:Identifying risks of stroke-associated pneumonia (SAP) is important for clinical management. We aimed to evaluate the association between gut microbiome composition and SAP in patients with acute ischemic stroke (AIS). Methods:A prospective observational study was conducted, and 188 AIS patients were enrolled as the training cohort. Fecal and serum samples were collected at admission. SAP was diagnosed by specialized physicians, and disease severity scores were recorded. Fecal samples were subjected to 16S rRNA V4 tag sequencing and analysed with QIIME and LEfSe. Associations between the most relevant taxa and SAP were analysed and validated with an independent cohort. Fecal short-chain fatty acid (SCFA), serum D-lactate (D-LA), intestinal fatty acid-binding protein (iFABP) and lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LBP) levels were measured. Results:Overall, 52 patients (27.7%) had SAP in the training cohort. The gut microbiome differed between SAP and non-SAP patients; specifically, depletion and opportunistic pathogen enrichment were noted in SAP patients, as confirmed in the validation cohort (n=144, 28 SAP [19.4%]). Based on multivariate analysis, was identified as a protective factor against SAP in both cohorts (training, aOR 0.52; 95% CI, 0.30-0.90; validation, aOR 0.44; 95% CI, 0.23-0.85). The combination of these taxa into a microbial dysbiosis index (MDI) revealed that dysbiosis increased nearly 2 times risk of SAP (training, aOR 1.95; 95% CI, 1.19-3.20; validation, aOR 2.22; 95% CI, 1.15-4.26). Lower fecal SCFA levels and higher serum D-LA levels were observed in SAP patients. Furthermore, SAP was an independent risk factor of 30-day death and 90-day unfavorable outcome. Conclusion:We demonstrate that a microbial community with depleted and enriched opportunistic pathogens is associated with increased risk of SAP among AIS patients. Gut microbiota screening might be useful for identifying patients at high risk for SAP and provide clues for stroke treatment. 10.3389/fcimb.2021.715475