Microbiome effects on immunity, health and disease in the lung

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Clinical and Translational Immunology, 2017, 6 (3)
Issue Date:
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Chronic respiratory diseases, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and cystic fibrosis (CF), are among the leading causes of mortality and morbidity worldwide. In the past decade, the interest in the role of microbiome in maintaining lung health and in respiratory diseases has grown exponentially. The advent of sophisticated multiomics techniques has enabled the identification and characterisation of microbiota and their roles in respiratory health and disease. Furthermore, associations between the microbiome of the lung and gut, as well as the immune cells and mediators that may link these two mucosal sites, appear to be important in the pathogenesis of lung conditions. Here we review the recent evidence of the role of normal gastrointestinal and respiratory microbiome in health and how dysbiosis affects chronic pulmonary diseases. The potential implications of host and environmental factors such as age, gender, diet and use of antibiotics on the composition and overall functionality of microbiome are also discussed. We summarise how microbiota may mediate the dynamic process of immune development and/or regulation focusing on recent data from both clinical human studies and translational animal studies. This furthers the understanding of the pathogenesis of chronic pulmonary diseases and may yield novel avenues for the utilisation of microbiota as potential therapeutic interventions.
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