Saturday, 19 April 2014

Inflammasomes: keeping the gut microbiota in check

Resident gut bacteria are important for digesting food, synthesizing nutrients, and controlling growth of pathogenic bacteria. Alterations in the gut microbiota can result in outgrowth of pathogenic organisms. Certain phyla of bacteria, namely Prevotellaceae and members of the TM7 phylum, elicit inflammation and have been associated with periodontal and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

This is the basis of an article by Elana Ehrlich and the article is being hosted by Qiagen.

Recently, mice deficient in the protein NLRP6 were shown to have a more colitogenic bacterial population with high representation of members of the Prevotellaceae and TM7 phyla. This colitogenic microbiota was transferable to neonatal and co-housed adult wild type mice. The altered microbiota stimulated CCL5 secretion which triggered chronic inflammation and increased incidence of spontaneous and induced IBD. NLRP proteins are components of inflammasomes, suggesting that NLRP6 inflammasomes are important for maintaining a healthy gut microbiota. These findings have implications for development of new treatment options for IBD. Analyzing inflammasome and related pathways such as autophagy, ER stress and innate and adaptive immunity, through real time PCR will expand our understanding of this process.

The full article can be accessed here: Qiagen

Posted by Tim Sandle