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    Can Targeting Gut Bacteria Prevent Autoimmune Disease?


    Jefferson Adams


    • Researchers suggest that targeting a specific gut bacterium could help to prevent autoimmune disease. They found that E. gallinarum triggered an autoimmune response in mice when it traveled beyond the gut.


    Can Targeting Gut Bacteria Prevent Autoimmune Disease?
    Image Caption: Image: CC--John Voo

    Celiac.com 04/25/2018 - A team of Yale University researchers discovered that bacteria in the small intestine can travel to other organs and trigger an autoimmune response. In this case, they looked at Enterococcus gallinarum, which can travel beyond the gut to the spleen, lymph nodes, and liver. The research could be helpful for treating type 1 diabetes, lupus, and celiac disease.


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    In autoimmune diseases, such as type 1 diabetes, lupus, and celiac disease, the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells and tissues. Autoimmune disease affects nearly 24 million people in the United States. 

    In their study, a team of Yale University researchers discovered that bacteria in the small intestine can travel to other organs and trigger an autoimmune response. In this case, they looked at Enterococcus gallinarum, which can travel beyond the gut to the spleen, lymph nodes, and liver. They found that E. gallinarum triggered an autoimmune response in the mice when it traveled beyond the gut.

    They also found that the response can be countered by using antibiotics or vaccines to suppress the autoimmune reaction and prevent the bacterium from growing. The researchers were able to duplicate this mechanism using cultured human liver cells, and they also found the bacteria E. gallinarum in the livers of people with autoimmune disease.

    The team found that administering an antibiotic or vaccine to target E. gallinarum suppressed the autoimmune reaction in the mice and prevented the bacterium from growing. "When we blocked the pathway leading to inflammation," says senior study author Martin Kriegel, "we could reverse the effect of this bug on autoimmunity."

    Team research team plans to further investigate the biological mechanisms that are associated with E. gallinarum, along with the potential implications for systemic lupus and autoimmune liver disease.

    This study indicates that gut bacteria may be the key to treating chronic autoimmune conditions such as systemic lupus and autoimmune liver disease. Numerous autoimmune conditions have been linked to gut bacteria.

    Read the full study in Science.


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  • Related Articles

    Roy Jamron
    Celiac.com 11/06/2008 - Previously, the possible link between gut bacteria and celiac disease has been discussed in "Do Vitamin D Deficiency, Gut Bacteria, and Gluten Combine in Infancy to Cause Celiac Disease?"[1] A 5-year European study, DIABIMMUNE, is currently underway focusing on some 7000 children, from birth, investigating the development of intestinal bacterial flora and its influence on the development of the human immune system and autoimmune disease, including celiac disease.[2] Hopefully, this study will provide some much needed answers. Now a Spanish group of scientists has produced further evidence supporting a possible role for gut bacteria in the pathogenesis of celiac disease by investigating whether gut microflora present in the feces of celiac disease patients participates in the pro-inflammatory activity of celiac disease.[3]
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    Sources

    [1] Do Vitamin D Deficiency, Gut Bacteria, and Gluten Combine in Infancy to Cause Celiac Disease?
    Roy S. Jamron
    https://www.celiac.com/articles/21605/
    [2] European Study Will Focus On Relation Of Gut Bacteria to Autoimmune Disease in Children
    Roy S. Jamron
    https://www.celiac.com/articles/21607/
    [3] Journal of Inflammation 2008, 5:19.
    Bifidobacterium strains suppress in vitro the pro-inflammatory milieu triggered by the large intestinal microbiota of coeliac patients.
    Medina M, De Palma G, Ribes-Koninckx C, Calabuig M, Sanza Y.
    http://www.journal-inflammation.com/content/pdf/1476-9255-5-19.pdf
    [4] J Clin Immunol. 2008 Jul;28(4):306-13.
    Regulatory role of promoter and 3' UTR variants of vitamin D receptor gene on cytokine response in pulmonary tuberculosis.
    Selvaraj P, Vidyarani M, Alagarasu K, Prabhu Anand S, Narayanan PR.
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/d67236620021j84u/
    [5] Prof. Thomas J. Borody, M.D., Bio and Publication List http://www.cdd.com.au/html/hospital/clinicalstaff/borody.html http://www.cdd.com.au/html/expertise/publications.html

    Kristina Campbell
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    Source:

    PLoS One. 2011 Jan 13;6(1):e16169

    Jefferson Adams
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    Source:
    Am J Gastroenterol. 2014;109(12):1933-1941.

    Jefferson Adams
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    Source:
    Science  09 Mar 2018: Vol. 359, Issue 6380, pp. 1156-1161. DOI: 10.1126/science.aar7201

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    Source:
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    Source:
    grubstreet.com