Gut health linked to chronic inflammatory diseases like arthritis

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In a new study from Éric Boilard of Université Laval, researchers found a link between gut microbiota and chronic inflammatory diseases such as arthritis.

They discovered that a protein naturally present in the gut acts on the microbiota and causes the formation of molecules that trigger the symptoms of these diseases.

The protein in question, phospholipase A2-IIA, was discovered several years ago in the fluid that surrounds the joints of people with arthritis.

The protein was subsequently detected elsewhere in the body, notably in the gut where it is produced in abundance.

To study the effect of this protein on gut microbiota, the researchers used a line of transgenic mice.

Experiments on these mice revealed that phospholipase alters the profile of bacterial lipids that end up in the gut.

By releasing fatty acids from the bacterial membranes, the protein produces proinflammatory lipids that exacerbate chronic inflammation and increase the severity of arthritis symptoms.

In another study, Japanese researchers from the University of Tokyo demonstrated that the action of phospholipase on the gut microbiota of mice also affects psoriasis, another inflammatory disease, as well as skin cancer.

These breakthroughs could have therapeutic implications.

“The work suggests that local inhibition of phospholipase may alleviate the inflammatory process that exacerbates certain diseases.

It also suggests that blocking the bacterial proinflammatory lipids produced in the gut by this protein could reduce symptoms in people with systemic inflammatory diseases.

The next step in the work is to test these ideas in patients with arthritis.

If you care about gut health, please read studies about unhealthy gut linked to aggressive prostate cancer, and diet that could boost your gut health and weight loss.

For more information about health, please see recent studies about major cause of fatty liver disease, leaky gut, and results showing that oats and rye brans can protect your gut and liver health.

The study is published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation—Insight. One author of the study is Etienne Doré.

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