Neutrophils in colitis: the role of the gut microbiota

2019-06-05T14:36:42Z (GMT) by SJ SIJIE SHEN
Patients with ulcerative colitis experience debilitating symptoms such as severe weight loss, bloody diarrhea and constant fatigue. Although abnormal immune cell infiltration is thought to be a contributing factor, the underlying mechanism remains unknown. Recent evidence suggests that the gut microbiota play important roles in the balance between health and disease. Indeed, my research findings demonstrate that removal of invariant natural killer T cells change the gut microbiota to one that attenuates colitis development. In contrast, a fibre-deficient diet enriches for bacteria in the gut that worsen disease. Therefore, modulation of gut bacteria is a novel therapeutic strategy for colitis.