The gut microbiome and cardiovascular disease: current knowledge and clinical potential

Adilah F. Ahmad, Girish Dwivedi, Fergal O'Gara, Jose Caparros-Martin, Natalie C. Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Web of Science)


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death worldwide. The human body is populated by a diverse community of microbes, dominated by bacteria, but also including viruses and fungi. The largest and most complex of these communities is located in the gastrointestinal system and, with its associated genome, is known as the gut microbiome. Gut microbiome perturbations and related dysbiosis have been implicated in the progression and pathogenesis of CVD, including atherosclerosis, hypertension, and heart failure. Although there have been advances in the characterization and analysis of the gut microbiota and associated bacterial metabolites, the exact mechanisms through which they exert their action are not well understood. This review will focus on the role of the gut microbiome and associated functional components in the development and progression of atherosclerosis. Potential treatments to alter the gut microbiome to prevent or treat atherosclerosis and CVD are also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)H923-H938
JournalAmerican journal of physiology. Heart and circulatory physiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019


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