Clinical and research interest in salivary peptidome and microbiota is ever-growing owing to its great value for diagnosis, risk assessment and prediction of prognosis in oral and systemic diseases. Saliva can be stimulated for the purpose of rapid collection, but currently there are no studies systematically addressing the similarities and differences of salivary peptidome and microbiota in different types of samples. The purpose of this study was to investigate the variations of salivary peptidome and microbial profiles in response to different stimulating conditions. Unstimulated saliva and three types of stimulated saliva samples (olfaction, gustation, and mastication stimulated saliva) were collected from 10 systematically and orally healthy donors. The peptidome profiles were detected by weak cation exchange magnetic beads and analyzed through matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-time of flight-mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS), while their microbial profiles were analyzed by 16S rDNA V3-V4 hypervariable region amplicon sequencing utilizing the Illumina MiSeq PE300 platform. The distance matrixes of salivary peptidome and microbial profiles were generated and the intra-individual distances were extracted, then the variations brought by different sampling conditions and repeated collections were compared. By comparisons of the overall salivary peptidome and microbial profiles, olfactory stimulation led to minimal variations comparing with that of unstimulated saliva, but appreciable variations were observed between saliva samples collected with gustatory/masticatory stimulation and unstimulated saliva. The three types of stimulated saliva exhibited significantly different peptidome and microbial profiles. Stimulated saliva collected in response to olfactory stimulation is an appropriate alternative to unstimulated saliva, whereas gustatory/masticatory stimulation introduced appreciable variations. It is suggested that only one type of stimulating method should be used throughout one peptidome/microbiome research, which provides comprehensive insight into the optimization of sampling methods for salivaomic studies in the future.
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