Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Anna Ahn

Reader 2

Diane Thomson


Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) impacts not only respiratory but also gut and oral microbiomes, influencing the manifestations of COVID-19. Each person’s unique microbiome consists of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses, some of which are symbiotic and others potentially harmful. Alterations in the gut microbiome, specifically, can affect the severity and symptoms of COVID-19. A review of studies indicate a pattern of gut dysbiosis in COVID-19 patients characterized by a decrease in beneficial microbiota and/or an increase in opportunistic pathogens. This gut imbalance correlates with disease severity, suggesting that the gut microbiome plays a significant role in the body's response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. The potential bidirectional relationship between COVID-19 and gut dysbiosis warrants research on possible therapeutics that could rebalance the gut microbiome both pre- and post SARS-CoV-2 infection. Though COVID-19’s manifestations are multifaceted, research focused on the depletion of butyrate-producing bacteria could prove to be fruitful in developing effective treatments.