(HealthDay News) – Alterations in bacterial communities present in the sinuses correlate with chronic sinusitis.

Nicole A. Abreu, from the San Francisco State University in Hensill, and colleagues used high-resolution microbiome genetic profiling to compare sinus microbiota from patients undergoing sinus or nasal surgery, 10 of which had chronic rhinosinusitis and 10 of which were healthy.

The researchers found that the sinus microbiota from patients with chronic rhinosinusitis was less diverse, with depletion of lactic acid bacteria and enrichment of a single bacterial species, Corynebacterium tuberculostearicum. Inoculating mice with C. tuberculostearicum in the presence of a depleted microbiome induced sinusitis, while mice with a replete mucosal microbiota were protected from this species. The presence of Lactobacillus sakei, which the microbiome analysis had indicated was potentially protective, was a defense against C. tuberculostearicum, even when the sinus bacterial community was depleted.

“These studies demonstrate that sinus mucosal health is highly dependent on the composition of the resident microbiota as well as identify both a new sinopathogen and a strong bacterial candidate for therapeutic intervention,” Abreu and colleagues conclude.

One author is on the scientific advisory board of Second Genome; several authors have filed a patent on sinusitis diagnostics and treatments.

Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)