Microbiome Imbalance Can Induce Crohn’s Disease-like Inflammation

Microbiome Imbalance Can Induce Crohn’s Disease-like Inflammation
In a new study entitled “Dysbiotic gut microbiota causes transmissible Crohn's disease-like ileitis independent of failure in antimicrobial defense,” researchers report to have found that bacterial imbalance in the gut of mice causes gut inflammation, similar to the one that characterizes human Crohn's disease. The study was published in the journal Gut. Crohn’s disease (CD) is one of the main forms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and is characterized by inflammation that can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract, but mainly affects the terminal ileum of small intestine and proximal colon. Recent studies suggested that dysbiosis (i.e., a microbial imbalance) of the intestinal microbiota is associated with CD. In this study, researchers at the Technische Universität München (TUM) aimed to determine if indeed bacterial community imbalance could trigger chronic small intestinal inflammation. To this end, researchers used a mouse model for chronic CD-like ileitis (i.e., inflammation of the ileum), the TNFdeltaARE mice. The team used germ-free (GF)-TNFdeltaARE mice (germ free indicates mice that have no microorganisms living in or on them) and discovered that these mice are protected from intestinal inflammation. However, when these mice were transplanted with disease-associated microbiota, they developed CD-like ileitis, while if transplanted with healthy microbiota the inflammation phenotype does not occur. As noted by Prof. Dirk Haller, TUM Chair of Nutrition and Immunology and study lead author "Although we used mice that had an increased genetic disposition towards Crohn's-type inflammation, they did not develop symptoms until we implanted the intestinal bacteria of affected animals." The team performed further studies and analyzed the i
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