BACKGROUND: Orofacial granulomatosis (OFG) is a rare disease characterised by chronic, noncaseating, granulomatous inflammation primarily affecting the oral cavity. Histologically, it is similar to Crohn's disease (CD), and a proportion of patients have both OFG and CD. The cause of OFG remains elusive, but it has been suggested that microbial interactions may be involved. The aim of this study was to compare the salivary microbial composition of subjects with OFG and/or CD and healthy controls.

METHODS: Two hundred sixty-one subjects were recruited, of whom 78 had OFG only, 40 had both OFG and CD, 97 had CD only with no oral symptoms, and 46 were healthy controls. Bacterial community profiles were obtained by sequencing the V1-V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene.

RESULTS: There were no differences in richness or diversity of the salivary bacterial communities between patient groups and controls. The relative abundance of the Streptococcus salivarius group was raised in patients with OFG or CD only compared with controls, whereas that of the Streptococcus mitis group was lower in CD compared with both OFG and controls. One S. salivarius oligotype made the major contribution to the increased proportions seen in patients with OFG and CD.

CONCLUSIONS: The salivary microbiome of individuals with OFG and CD was similar to that found in health, although the proportions of S. salivarius, a common oral Streptococcus, were raised. One specific strain-level oligotype was found to be primarily responsible for the increased levels seen.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1367-1374
Number of pages8
JournalInflammatory Bowel Diseases
Issue number8
Early online date23 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019


  • Microbiota
  • Orofacial granulomatosis
  • Saliva
  • Streptococcus


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