Hidden microbiome transformations during gut inflammation. - Kenneth Rainin Foundation

Hidden microbiome transformations during gut inflammation.

Gut inflammation alters the bacterial communities in the gut (the microbiome), and these disruptions are thought to make inflammation even worse. Understanding and derailing this cycle could provide new avenues for IBD therapy. Although we know that inflammation can change “who’s there” in the gut microbiome, this project will determine whether harder-to-measure changes within the microbiome also impact the cycle of inflammation and microbiome disruption. Specifically, we will study whether episodes of inflammation cause these bacteria to change by altering their genetic instructions or how those instructions are read out. If successful, the study will uncover new measurements that we need to collect in order to understand how an individual’s microbiome responds to flares of inflammation and remission in IBD. In the future, this understanding will help us design microbiome-based therapies equipped to persist in the inflamed gut and break the cycle of microbiome disruption and inflammation that characterizes IBD.