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Gut commensal microbes shape the mucosal immune system by regulating the differentiation and expansion of several types of T cell. Clostridia, a dominant class of commensal microbe, can induce colonic regulatory T (Treg) cells, which have a central role in the suppression of inflammatory and allergic responses. However, the molecular mechanisms by which(More)
Manipulation of the gut microbiota holds great promise for the treatment of inflammatory and allergic diseases. Although numerous probiotic microorganisms have been identified, there remains a compelling need to discover organisms that elicit more robust therapeutic responses, are compatible with the host, and can affect a specific arm of the host immune(More)
The human gut is colonized with a wide variety of microorganisms, including species, such as those belonging to the bacterial genus Bifidobacterium, that have beneficial effects on human physiology and pathology. Among the most distinctive benefits of bifidobacteria are modulation of host defence responses and protection against infectious diseases.(More)
The mucosal immune system forms the largest part of the entire immune system, containing about three-quarters of all lymphocytes and producing grams of secretory IgA daily to protect the mucosal surface from pathogens. To evoke the mucosal immune response, antigens on the mucosal surface must be transported across the epithelial barrier into organized(More)
Cell-cell communication is essential for the development and homeostasis of multicellular organisms. Recently, a new type of cell-cell communication was discovered that is based on the formation of thin membranous nanotubes between remote cells. These long membrane tethers, termed tunneling nanotubes (TNTs), form an intercellular conduit and have been shown(More)
BACKGROUND & AIMS LL-37/human cationic antimicrobial peptide 18 (hCAP18) is a human cathelicidin with broad-spectrum antimicrobial, lipopolysaccharide binding, and chemotactic activities. This study examined the role of LL-37/hCAP18 in gastric innate immune defense by characterizing its constitutive and regulated expression by human gastric mucosa and its(More)
Intestinal microfold cells (M cells) are an enigmatic lineage of intestinal epithelial cells that initiate mucosal immune responses through the uptake and transcytosis of luminal antigens. The mechanisms of M-cell differentiation are poorly understood, as the rarity of these cells has hampered analysis. Exogenous administration of the cytokine RANKL can(More)
Separate populations of M cells have been detected in the follicle-associated epithelium of Peyer's patches (PPs) and the villous epithelium of the small intestine, but the traits shared by or distinguishing the two populations have not been characterized. Our separate study has demonstrated that a potent mucosal modulator cholera toxin (CT) can induce(More)
Intestinal regulatory T cells (Treg cells) are necessary for the suppression of excessive immune responses to commensal bacteria. However, the molecular machinery that controls the homeostasis of intestinal Treg cells has remained largely unknown. Here we report that colonization of germ-free mice with gut microbiota upregulated expression of the(More)
Antimicrobial peptides are highly conserved evolutionarily and are thought to play an important role in innate immunity at intestinal mucosal surfaces. To better understand the role of the antimicrobial peptide human cathelicidin LL-37/human cationic antimicrobial protein 18 (hCAP18) in intestinal mucosal defense, we characterized the regulated expression(More)