New research, involving mice, has shown that antibiotics used in very early life can alter the normal development of gut bacteria and may contribute to the development of a number of inflammatory conditions including multiple sclerosis (MS), asthma and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
The report, published in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology, presented more evidence to suggest that altering gut flora may be a viable treatment strategy for some inflammatory conditions.
“Our study demonstrates that gut bacteria in early life do affect disease development in adulthood, but this response can be changed,” said Colby Zaph, Head, Laboratory of Mucosal Immunity and Inflammation, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, School of Biomedical Sciences at Monash University, Australia. “This has important ramifications for the use of pre- and probiotics, the administration of antibiotics to neonates, and our understanding of how gut bacteria play a critical role in influencing the development of inflammatory diseases such as IBD.”
“Our intestinal commensal bacteria are now understood to have a major role in shaping immune health and disease, but the details for this process remain poorly understood,” said John Wherry, Ph.D., Deputy Editor of the Journal of Leukocyte Biology. “These new studies provide an important clue as to how the early signals from our gut bacteria shape key immune cells and how these neonatal events can shape disease potential later in life.”
Source: MS-UK (12/04/17)