Caister Academic Press

Interaction of bifidobacteria with the intestinal mucosa with a focus on immuno-modulating effects

Eiji Miyauchi, Jin-zhong Xiao, and Soichi Tanabe
from: Bifidobacteria: Genomics and Molecular Aspects (Edited by: Baltasar Mayo and Douwe van Sinderen). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2010)


Bifidobacteria predominate in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) of mammals. They are thought to benefit the host in various ways through interaction with intestinal mucosal cells. The interaction is the initiating event in immuno-modulation and merits particular attention. Intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) help to maintain gut homeostasis physically and immunologically. Bifidobacteria communicate with IECs and can ameliorate their inflammation. In vitro studies show that bifidobacteria can induce maturation of dendritic cells as well as differentiation and maturation of naïve T cells. These bifidobacteria-host cell interactions are, at least in part, triggered by pattern-recognition receptors such as toll-like receptors. Bacterial cell wall constituents, such as peptidoglycans and lipoteichoic acids, and bacterial DNA are involved in modulation of immune responses. Many clinical trials have been conducted to clarify the effectiveness of bifidobacteria with regards to their ability to prevent and/or alleviate allergic disorders, inflammatory bowel diseases and irritable bowel syndrome read more ...
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