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Purpose of review: Data regarding the effects of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on host-microbiome alteration and subsequent effects on susceptibility and clinical course of COVID-19, especially in atopic patients, are currently limited. Here, we review the studies regarding the microbiome of atopic patients with other respiratory infections and discuss the potential role of probiotics as therapeutic targets for COVID-19 to decrease its susceptibility and severity of COVID-19.

Recent findings: Respiratory tract virus infection affects the gut and airway microbiome structures and host's immune function. Diverse factors in atopic diseases affect the airway and gut microbiome structures, which are expected to negatively influence host health. However, response to respiratory virus infection in atopic hosts depends on the preexisting microbiome and immune responses. This may explain the inconclusiveness of the effects of COVID-19 on the susceptibility, morbidity, and mortality of patients with atopic diseases. Beneficial probiotics may be a therapeutic adjuvant in COVID-19 infection as the beneficial microbiome can decrease the viral load in the early phase of respiratory virus infection and improve the morbidity and mortality.

Summary: Application of probiotics can be a potential adjuvant treatment in respiratory virus infection to improve host immune responses and disturbed microbiome structures in atopic patients. Further related studies involving COVID-19 are warranted in near future.

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