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    Many studies on human intestinal microbiota indicate that gender difference is one of the key factors influencing microbial community composition. To date, the degree of influence that gender has on equid intestinal microbiota has not been reported. Thus, microbiota was analyzed in feces of seven female Przewalski's horses (FRPHs) and seven male Przewalski's horses (MRPHs) in this study, determining which microbiota characteristics respond to gender biases. The microbial community composition and structure were explored by 16S rRNA sequencing, followed by diversity analysis and difference analysis. Female Przewalski's horses showed higher Shannon diversity than MRPHs, no difference in Simpson diversity, and displayed difference in beta diversity. Although gender had little effect on the overall microbiota, it significantly changed the dominant microbial community in each classification level. Male Przewalski's horses contained significantly higher amounts of microorganisms related with diseases, including spirochetes (phylum), deltaproteobacteria (class), fibrobacteria (class), spirochaetia (class), desulfovibrionales (order), fibrobacterales (order), spirochaetales (order), and spirochaetaceae (family). Female Przewalski's horses showed less than MRPHs in the top 10 genera. To our knowledge, this study is the first to document the gender-related intestinal microbiota profile in equines and discovered notable differences between the gender, which suggests that gender should be considered as a biological variable in future microbiota studies. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


    Dini Hu, Yuzhu Chao, Youlin Li, Xiangqian Peng, Chen Wang, Zhenbiao Wang, Dong Zhang, Kai Li. Effect of Gender Bias on Equine Fecal Microbiota. Journal of equine veterinary science. 2021 Feb;97:103355

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    PMID: 33478764

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