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gut and vaginal microbiome

The gut and vaginal microbiome talk to each other

Today’s paper

is about the gut microbiome and how it ‘cross talks’ with the vaginal microbiome – amazing!

The journal:

Frontiers in Immunology

The paper:

Female Gut and Genital Tract Microbiota-Induced Crosstalk and Differential Effects of Short-Chain Fatty Acids on Immune Sequelae (Sep 2020)

The authors: 

Emmanuel Amabebe and Dilly O. C. Anumba

Take-home points:

  • The study found that the gut and genital tract microbiota in females can communicate with each other, potentially influencing the immune system in both locations.
  • The researchers observed changes in the immune system in both the gut and genital tract after introducing short chain fatty acids SCFAs, which are postbiotics produced by the microbiota during the fermentation of dietary fibers.
  • Specifically, the study found that SCFAs had differential effects on the immune system in the gut and genital tract. In the gut, SCFAs increased the number of regulatory T cells, which can suppress immune responses. In the genital tract, SCFAs decreased the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which can contribute to inflammation and tissue damage.
  • The authors suggest that these findings could have important implications for the development of therapies for conditions that affect both the gut and genital tract, such as inflammatory bowel disease and bacterial vaginosis.
  • The study also highlights the importance of considering the whole body and the interactions between different microbiota and organ systems when investigating the effects of dietary interventions and other therapies on the immune system.
  • Overall, the article provides new insights into the complex interactions between the gut and genital tract microbiota and their effects on the immune system, and the potential for SCFAs to modulate immune responses in different parts of the body.
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