Preclinical studies have demonstrated that intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) is associated with reduced lung development during the neonatal period and infancy. Uteroplacental insufficiency (UPI), affecting approximately 10% of human pregnancies, is the most common cause of IUGR. This study investigated the effects of UPI on lung development and the intestinal microbiota and correlations in newborn rats with IUGR, using bilateral uterine artery ligation to induce UPI. Maternal fecal samples were collected on postnatal day 0. On postnatal days 0 and 7, lung and intestinal microbiota samples were collected from the left lung and the lower gastrointestinal tract. The right lung was harvested for histological assessment and Western blot analysis. Results showed that UPI through bilateral uterine artery ligation did not alter the maternal gut microbiota. IUGR impaired lung development and angiogenesis in newborn rats. Moreover, on postnatal day 0, the presence of Acinetobacter and Delftia in the lungs and Acinetobacter and Nevskia in the gastrointestinal tract was negatively correlated with lung development. Bacteroides in the lungs and Rodentibacter and Romboutsia in the gastrointestinal tract were negatively correlated with lung development on day 7. UPI may have regulated lung development and angiogenesis through the modulation of the newborn rats’ intestinal and lung microbiota.
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