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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)
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)
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)
Mutations of genes encoding alpha4, beta2, or alpha2 subunits (CHRNA4, CHRNB2, or CHRNA2, respectively) of nAChR [neuronal nicotinic ACh (acetylcholine) receptor] cause nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy (NFLE) in human. NFLE-related seizures are seen exclusively during sleep and are characterized by three distinct seizure phenotypes: "paroxysmal arousals,"(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)
Tunneling nanotubes (TNTs) and associated structures are recently recognized structures for intercellular communication. They are F-actin-containing thin protrusions of the plasma membrane of a cell and allow a direct physical connection to the plasma membranes of remote cells. TNTs and associated structures serve as mediators for intercellular transfer of(More)
MOTIVATION Although a huge amount of mammalian genomic data does become publicly available, there are still hurdles for biologists to overcome before such data can be fully exploited. One of the challenges for gaining biological insight from genomic data has been the inability to cross-reference transcriptomic and proteomic data using a single informational(More)
Airway hypersensitive reaction (AHR) is an animal model for asthma, which is caused or enhanced by environmental factors such as allergen exposure. However, the precise mechanisms that drive AHR remain unclear. We identified a novel subset of natural killer T (NKT) cells that expresses the interleukin 17 receptor B (IL-17RB) for IL-25 (also known as IL-17E)(More)
Follicle-associated epithelium (FAE) covering Peyer's patches contains specialized epithelial M cells that take up ingested macromolecules and microorganisms from the lumen of the gut by transcytosis. Using high-density oligonucleotide microarrays, we analyzed the gene expression profiles of FAE and M cells in order to characterize their cellular(More)