Recent test results from microbiota sequencing of elderly people from Italy and China suggest that the microbiota change could be intrinsic to the aging process; that the composition of the gut microbiota changes with age, causing inflammation. Studies found that microbiota diversity decreases in aged mice and the elderly.
Frail elderly people often show a severe decrease of beneficial gut bacteria, such as Akkermansia muciniphila (A. muciniphila) and SCFA-producing bacteria. Also fecal microbiota diversity and abundance of A. muciniphila decrease in human centenarians. Additionally, the gut of middle aged people is dominated by Ruminococcaceae, Lachnospiraceae and Bacteridaceae families, including Bifidobacteria and Lactobacilli, all of which decrease with aging.
These changes in the gut microbiota can be exacerbated by external and internal factors, such as diet and consuming antibiotics. It can lead to dysbiosis. Dysbiosis, an imbalance in the gut micro flora, is a primary cause of ailments among the elderly, and premature death of elderly people, according to Biomed Central.