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ACTRIMS 2022 | The salivary microbiome as a diagnostic biomarker in MS

Daiki Takewaki, MD, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Tokyo, Japan, discusses salivary microbiome dysbiosis as a promising biomarker in multiple sclerosis (MS). While many studies have shown gut microbiota alterations in patients with MS and implicated these changes in MS pathogenesis, the characteristics of the salivary microbiome remain unclear. To study this, the salivary microbiome was analyzed in over 90 patients with MS (relapsing-remitting MS, secondary progressive MS, and atypical MS), 20 patients with neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD), and 60 healthy controls. Substantial differences in microbiome composition were seen between each patient group and the healthy controls. When assessing the diagnostic performance of the salivary microbiome, the area under the curve (AUC) value distinguishing relapsing-remitting MS from healthy controls based on the saliva data was 0.94 in a discovery cohort and 0.83 in a replication cohort, suggesting it may represent a useful marker for early disease detection. Dr Takewaki discusses ongoing investigations into the nature of the relationship between MS and salivary dysbiosis. This interview took place at the ACTRIMS Forum 2022 in West Palm Beach, Florida.