Low gut microbial diversity in the intestines of infants could raise the risk for asthma development a new research has suggested. In 2011 the results of a comprehensive survey of the intestinal microbiota of allergic and healthy children were published. In the samples from the infancy period the degree of variation and diversity of the bacteria strains was significantly lower among those who had developed allergic eczema when they were two years old. A follow-up study was conducted when the 47 participating infants reached their seventh birthday. By then eight of them 17 per cent were suffering from chronic asthma.