Preterm birth poses a global challenge with a continuously increasing disease burden during the last decades. Advances in understanding the etiopathogenesis did not lead to a reduction of prematurely born infants so far. A balanced development of the host microbiome in early life is key for the maturation of the immune system and many other physiological functions. With the tremendous progress in new diagnostic possibilities, the contribution of microbiota changes to preterm birth and the acute and long-term sequelae of prematurity have come into the research focus. This review summarizes the latest advances in the understanding of microbiomes in the amniotic cavity and the female lower genital tract and how changes in microbiota structures contribute to preterm delivery. The exhibition of these highly vulnerable infants to the hostile environment in the neonatal intensive care unit necessarily entails the rapid colonization with a nonbalanced microbiome in a situation where the organism is still very prone and at an early stage of development. The global research efforts to decipher pathologic changes will pave the way to new pre- and postnatal therapeutic concepts.