Author(s): Hummel S, Veltman K, Cichon C, Sonnenborn U, Schmidt MA
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Abstract The intestinal ecosystem is balanced by dynamic interactions between resident and incoming microbes, the gastrointestinal barrier, and the mucosal immune system. However, in the context of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), where the integrity of the gastrointestinal barrier is compromised, resident microbes contribute to the development and perpetuation of inflammation and disease. Probiotic bacteria have been shown to exert beneficial effects, e.g., enhancing epithelial barrier integrity. However, the mechanisms underlying these beneficial effects are only poorly understood. Here, we comparatively investigated the effects of four probiotic lactobacilli, namely, Lactobacillus acidophilus, L. fermentum, L. gasseri, and L. rhamnosus, in a T84 cell epithelial barrier model. Results of DNA microarray experiments indicating that lactobacilli modulate the regulation of genes encoding in particular adherence junction proteins such as E-cadherin and β-catenin were confirmed by quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (qRT-PCR). Furthermore, we show that epithelial barrier function is modulated by Gram-positive probiotic lactobacilli via their effect on adherence junction protein expression and complex formation. In addition, incubation with lactobacilli differentially influences the phosphorylation of adherence junction proteins and the abundance of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms such as PKCδ that thereby positively modulates epithelial barrier function. Further insight into the underlying molecular mechanisms triggered by these probiotics might also foster the development of novel strategies for the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases (e.g., IBD).
This article was published in Appl Environ Microbiol
and referenced in Journal of Gastrointestinal & Digestive System