Yale University researchers have identified a handful of bacterial culprits that may drive inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, using patients' own intestinal immune responses as a guide. The findings are published Aug. 28 in the journal Cell.
Trillions of bacteria exist within the human intestinal microbiota, which plays a critical role in the development and progression of IBD. Yet it's thought that only a small number of bacterial species affect a person's susceptibility to IBD and its potential severity.
A new study by Yale University researchers has identified potential bacterial drivers of inflammatory bowel disease.
Credit: Patrick Lynch
"A handful of bad bacteria are able to attain access to the immune system and get right at the gut," said Richard Flavell, the Sterling Professor of Immunobiology at the Yale School of Medicine. "If you look at the bacteria to which we have made an immune response, you can begin to find these bad actors."
Flavell's research team focused on antibody coatings on the surface of bacteria. In particular, Yale researchers looked at bacteria with high concentrations of an antibody coating called Immunoglobulin A (IgA).
"The coating is our body's attempt to neutralize the bacteria," Flavell said. "It binds to the bad bacteria. We only make these IgA responses to a limited number of organisms."
He and his team confirmed a correlation between high levels of IgA coating and inflammatory responses in the human intestine. To do this, the team collected "good" and "bad" bacteria from a small group of patients and transplanted them into mice. In healthy mice, there was no influence on intestinal inflammation; in mice with induced colitis, those with the suspected "bad" bacteria showed signs of excessive inflammation and other IBD symptoms.
Flavell warned that more research is necessary to learn how many bacterial species fall into the "bad" category and whether those populations are common to all IBD patients or are unique to each patient.
But the study's results indicate that anti-bacterial therapies for IBD are possible, Flavell said. Such anti-bacterial approaches might include highly specific antibiotics, vaccines, and probiotics.
"We believe an anti-bacterial strategy has a place in treating IBD," Flavell said.
Noah Palm and Marcel de Zoete were co-first authors of the study. The research was supported by the Blavatnik Family Foundation, a Rubicon Fellowship from the Netherlands Organization of Scientific Research, the Cancer Research Institute Irvington Fellowship Program, the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Defense, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the New York Crohn's Foundation, and a CCFA Career Development Award.
Jim Shelton | Eurek Alert!
Tracking Down the Causes of Alzheimer’s
03.09.2015 | Universität Basel
Pathways to Deep Decarbonization in Germany
02.09.2015 | Wuppertal Institut für Klima, Umwelt, Energie GmbH
In a survey of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope images of 2,753 young, blue star clusters in the neighboring Andromeda galaxy (M31), astronomers have found that M31 and our own galaxy have a similar percentage of newborn stars based on mass.
By nailing down what percentage of stars have a particular mass within a cluster, or the Initial Mass Function (IMF), scientists can better interpret the light...
Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE have developed a highly compact and efficient inverter for use in uninterruptible power...
China's Loess Plateau was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million years, according to a new report from University of Arizona geoscientists. The study is the first to explain how the steep-fronted plateau formed.
China's Loess Plateau was formed by wind alternately depositing dust or removing dust over the last 2.6 million years, according to a new report from...
The leaves of the lotus flower, and other natural surfaces that repel water and dirt, have been the model for many types of engineered liquid-repelling surfaces. As slippery as these surfaces are, however, tiny water droplets still stick to them. Now, Penn State researchers have developed nano/micro-textured, highly slippery surfaces able to outperform these naturally inspired coatings, particularly when the water is a vapor or tiny droplets.
Enhancing the mobility of liquid droplets on rough surfaces could improve condensation heat transfer for power-plant heat exchangers, create more efficient...
Longer, more severe, and hotter droughts and a myriad of other threats, including diseases and more extensive and severe wildfires, are threatening to transform some of the world's temperate forests, a new study published in Science has found. Without informed management, some forests could convert to shrublands or grasslands within the coming decades.
"While we have been trying to manage for resilience of 20th century conditions, we realize now that we must prepare for transformations and attempt to ease...
03.09.2015 | Event News
20.08.2015 | Event News
20.08.2015 | Event News
04.09.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering
04.09.2015 | Machine Engineering
04.09.2015 | Materials Sciences