Enterotypes of the human gut microbiome

Manimozhiyan Arumugam, Jeroen Raes, Eric Pelletier, Denis Le Paslier, Takuji Yamada, Daniel R. Mende, Gabriel R. Fernandes, Julien Tap, Thomas Bruls, Jean Michel Batto, Marcelo Bertalan, Natalia Borruel, Francesc Casellas, Leyden Fernandez, Laurent Gautier, Torben Hansen, Masahira Hattori, Tetsuya Hayashi, Michiel Kleerebezem, Ken KurokawaMarion Leclerc, Florence Levenez, Chaysavanh Manichanh, H. Bjørn Nielsen, Trine Nielsen, Nicolas Pons, Julie Poulain, Junjie Qin, Thomas Sicheritz-Ponten, Sebastian Tims, David Torrents, Edgardo Ugarte, Erwin G. Zoetendal, Jun Wang, Francisco Guarner, Oluf Pedersen, Willem M. de Vos, Søren Brunak, Joel Doré, Jean Weissenbach, S. Dusko Ehrlich, Peer Bork, María Antolín, François Artiguenave, Hervé M. Blottiere, Mathieu Almeida, Christian Brechot, Carlos Cara, Christian Chervaux, Antonella Cultrone, Christine Delorme, Gérard Denariaz, Rozenn Dervyn, Konrad U. Foerstner, Carsten Friss, Maarten van de Guchte, Eric Guedon, Florence Haimet, Wolfgang Huber, Johan van Hylckama-Vlieg, Alexandre Jamet, Catherine Juste, Ghalia Kaci, Jan Knol, Karsten Kristiansen, Omar Lakhdari, Severine Layec, Karine Le Roux, Emmanuelle Maguin, Alexandre Mérieux, Raquel Melo Minardi, Christine M’rini, Jean Muller, Raish Oozeer, Julian Parkhill, Pierre Renault, Maria Rescigno, Nicolas Sanchez, Shinichi Sunagawa, Antonio Torrejon, Keith Turner, Gaetana Vandemeulebrouck, Encarna Varela, Yohanan Winogradsky, Georg Zeller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4835 Citations (Scopus)


Our knowledge of species and functional composition of the human gut microbiome is rapidly increasing, but it is still based on very few cohorts and little is known about variation across the world. By combining 22 newly sequenced faecal metagenomes of individuals from four countries with previously published data sets, here we identify three robust clusters (referred to as enterotypes hereafter) that are not nation or continent specific. We also confirmed the enterotypes in two published, larger cohorts, indicating that intestinal microbiota variation is generally stratified, not continuous. This indicates further the existence of a limited number of well-balanced host-microbial symbiotic states that might respond differently to diet and drug intake. The enterotypes are mostly driven by species composition, but abundant molecular functions are not necessarily provided by abundant species, highlighting the importance of a functional analysis to understand microbial communities. Although individual host properties such as body mass index, age, or gender cannot explain the observed enterotypes, data-driven marker genes or functional modules can be identified for each of these host properties. For example, twelve genes significantly correlate with age and three functional modules with the body mass index, hinting at a diagnostic potential of microbial markers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-180
Number of pages7
Issue number7346
Publication statusPublished - May 12 2011
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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