Purpose of review Aging
share features of intestinal damage and alterations in the communities of enteric bacteria, termed dysbiosis. The purpose of this review is to highlight the various features of the gut microbiome
and in people with HIV
(PWH) and to discuss how aging
converge to impact the gut microbiome
. The term microbiome
reflects the combined genetic material of micro-organisms present including bacteria, viruses, bacteriophages, and fungi. To date, the majority of studies investigating the impact of aging
on the gut microbiome
have focused on bacteria, and therefore, for the purposes of this review, the term ‘microbiome
’ is used to reflect enteric bacterial communities.
Recent findings Aging
is associated with alterations in the gut bacterial microbiome
. Although changes vary by the age of the population, lifestyle (diet, physical activity) and geographic location, the age-associated dysbiosis is typically characterized by an increase in facultative anaerobes with inflammatory properties and a decrease in obligate anaerobes that play critical roles in maintaining intestinal homeostasis and in regulating host immunity. PWH also have dysbiotic gut microbiomes, many features of which reflect those observed in elderly persons. In one study, the age effect on the gut microbiome
differed based on HIV
serostatus in older adults.
and age may interact to shape the gut microbiome
. Future studies should investigate relationships between the gut microbiome
and age-associated comorbidities in older PWH populations. Identifying these links will provide new avenues for treatments and interventions to improve the healthspan and lifespan of older PWH.