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Fathers taking antibiotics at time of conception had 3X higher infant deaths (mice – so far) – May 2024

Father's gut microbiome may affect infant health (report on the study)

New Scientist

  • “Decreasing the diversity and abundance of gut microbes in male mice increases their offspring’s risk of low birth weight, stunted growth and premature death.”
  • “They had significantly lower birth weights and were 2.5 times more likely to have severely stunted growth at 2 weeks old. Roughly 17 per cent of these pups died within three months, while only 5 per cent of those fathered by the control-group mice did.”

Paternal microbiome perturbations impact offspring fitness

Nature (2024) https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-024-07336-w FREE PDF is too big for VitaminDWiki
Ayele Argaw-Denboba, Thomas S. B. Schmidt, Monica Di Giacomo, Bobby Ranjan, Saravanan Devendran, Eleonora Mastrorilli, Catrin T. Lloyd, Danilo Pugliese, Violetta Paribeni, Juliette Dabin, Alessandra Pisaniello, Sergio Espinola, Alvaro Crevenna, Subhanita Ghosh, Neil Humphreys, Olga Boruc, Peter Sarkies, Michael Zimmermann, Peer Bork & Jamie A. Hackett

The gut microbiota operates at the interface of host–environment interactions to influence human homoeostasis and metabolic networks 1,2,3,4. Environmental factors that unbalance gut microbial ecosystems can therefore shape physiological and disease-associated responses across somatic tissues 5,6,7,8,9. However, the systemic impact of the gut microbiome on the germline—and consequently on the F1 offspring it gives rise to—is unexplored 10. Here we show that the gut microbiota act as a key interface between paternal preconception environment and intergenerational health in mice. Perturbations to the gut microbiota of prospective fathers increase the probability of their offspring presenting with low birth weight, severe growth restriction and premature mortality. Transmission of disease risk occurs via the germline and is provoked by pervasive gut microbiome perturbations, including non-absorbable antibiotics or osmotic laxatives, but is rescued by restoring the paternal microbiota before conception. This effect is linked with a dynamic response to induced dysbiosis in the male reproductive system, including impaired leptin signalling, altered testicular metabolite profiles and remapped small RNA payloads in sperm. As a result, dysbiotic fathers trigger an elevated risk of in utero placental insufficiency, revealing a placental origin of mammalian intergenerational effects. Our study defines a regulatory ‘gut–germline axis’ in males, which is sensitive to environmental exposures and programmes offspring fitness through impacting placenta function.

Asked Perplexity AI: Do antibiotics in the father at the time of conception result in infant health problems

Yes, antibiotics taken by the father at the time of conception can potentially result in infant health problems. Research indicates that certain antibiotics can affect sperm quality, which may influence the health of the offspring. Here are some key findings from the research:

  • Impact on Sperm Quality: Antibiotics such as tetracycline, doxycycline, ciprofloxacin, and others have been shown to negatively affect sperm quality. This includes reducing sperm viability and motility, and causing DNA damage in sperm cells 1 2 5 1819.
  • Potential Health Problems in Offspring: There is evidence suggesting that the paternal use of antibiotics around the time of conception can lead to health issues in the offspring. For instance, a study found that disruptions in the paternal gut microbiome, which can be influenced by antibiotic use, were linked to low birth weight, severe growth restriction, and premature mortality in mice offspring 13 15. While this study was conducted on mice, it suggests a potential similar risk in humans.
  • Mechanisms of Impact: The mechanisms by which paternal antibiotic use affects offspring health include changes in the gut microbiome of the father, which can influence sperm quality and subsequently the health of the embryo. Antibiotics can cause alterations in the microbial balance in the gut, which is known to impact various bodily functions including reproductive health 13 15.
  • Recommendations for Fathers: Given the potential risks, it is advisable for prospective fathers to discuss their antibiotic use with a healthcare provider if planning conception. This is particularly important if the antibiotics are known to significantly impact sperm quality or the gut microbiome 14.
    • In conclusion, while more research is needed to fully understand the extent and mechanisms of the impact, current evidence suggests that antibiotics taken by the father at the time of conception can potentially lead to health problems in the offspring. This is due to the negative effects of some antibiotics on sperm quality and the gut microbiome.

Answer is amazingly up-to-date. References [15] and [13] which are on this page hit the web only a few days before the answer
19 references are at https://www.perplexity.ai/search/Do-antibiotics-in-2a66CouQSWK83eYx84rplQ

Antibiotics, probiotics contains:

VitaminDwiki – Microbiome contains

Some of the 35 Microbiome articles

Attached files

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