Temporal stability of tongue microbiota in older patients – A pilot study

Fa Tzu Tsai, Cheng Chieh Yang, Yu Cheng Lin, Ming Lun Hsu, Guang Hong, Mu Chen Yang, Ding Han Wang, Lin Jack Huang, Chiu Tzu Lin, Wun Eng Hsu, Hsi Feng Tu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background/purpose: Healthy states of human microbiota depend on a stable community of symbiotic microbes irrespective of external challenges from the environment. Thus, long-term stability of the oral microbiota is of importance, particularly for older patient populations. Materials and methods: We used next-generation sequencing (NGS) to examine the tongue microbiota of 18 individuals receiving long-term care over a 10-month period. Results: Beta diversity analysis demonstrated temporal stability of the tongue microbiota, as microbial compositions from all time points were indistinguishable from each other (P = 0.0887). However, significant individual variation in microbial composition (P = 0.0001) was observed, underscoring the presence of a unique microbial profile for each patient. Conclusion: The temporal dynamics of tongue microbiota exhibit long-term stability, providing diagnostic implications for oral diseases within older patient populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1087-1095
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Dental Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2024


  • 16S rRNA
  • Amplicon sequence variant
  • Older patient
  • Oral microbiota
  • Temporal stability


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