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  • Reunanen, Justus; Kainulainen, Veera; Huuskonen, Laura; Ottman, Noora; Belzer, Clara; Huhtinen, Heikki; de Vos, Willem M.; Satokari, Reetta (2015)
    Akkermansia muciniphila is a Gram-negative mucin-degrading bacterium that resides in the gastrointestinal tracts of humans and animals. A. muciniphila has been linked with intestinal health and improved metabolic status in obese and type 2 diabetic subjects. Specifically, A. muciniphila has been shown to reduce high-fat-diet-induced endotoxemia, which develops as a result of an impaired gut barrier. Despite the accumulating evidence of the health-promoting effects of A. muciniphila, the mechanisms of interaction of the bacterium with the host have received little attention. In this study, we used several in vitro models to investigate the adhesion of A. muciniphila to the intestinal epithelium and its interaction with the host mucosa. We found that A. muciniphila adheres strongly to the Caco-2 and HT-29 human colonic cell lines but not to human colonic mucus. In addition, A. muciniphila showed binding to the extracellular matrix protein laminin but not to collagen I or IV, fibronectin, or fetuin. Importantly, A. muciniphila improved enterocyte monolayer integrity, as shown by a significant increase in the transepithelial electrical resistance (TER) of cocultures of Caco-2 cells with the bacterium. Further, A. muciniphila induced interleukin 8 (IL-8) production by enterocytes at cell concentrations 100-fold higher than those for Escherichia coli, suggesting a very low level of proinflammatory activity in the epithelium. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that A. muciniphila adheres to the intestinal epithelium and strengthens enterocyte monolayer integrity in vitro, suggesting an ability to fortify an impaired gut barrier. These results support earlier associative in vivo studies and provide insights into the interaction of A. muciniphila with the host.
  • Kolmeder, Carolin A.; Salojarvi, Jarkko; Ritari, Jarmo; de Been, Mark; Raes, Jeroen; Falony, Gwen; Vieira-Silva, Sara; Kekkonen, Riina A.; Corthals, Garry L.; Palva, Airi; Salonen, Anne; de Vos, Willem M. (2016)
    Recent metagenomic studies have demonstrated that the overall functional potential of the intestinal microbiome is rather conserved between healthy individuals. Here we assessed the biological processes undertaken in-vivo by microbes and the host in the intestinal tract by conducting a metaproteome analysis from a total of 48 faecal samples of 16 healthy adults participating in a placebo-controlled probiotic intervention trial. Half of the subjects received placebo and the other half consumed Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG for three weeks (10(10) cfu per day). Faecal samples were collected just before and at the end of the consumption phase as well as after a three-week follow-up period, and were processed for microbial composition and metaproteome analysis. A common core of shared microbial protein functions could be identified in all subjects. Furthermore, we observed marked differences in expressed proteins between subjects that resulted in the definition of a stable and personalized microbiome both at the mass-spectrometry-based proteome level and the functional level based on the KEGG pathway analysis. No significant changes in the metaproteome were attributable to the probiotic intervention. A detailed taxonomic assignment of peptides and comparison to phylogenetic microarray data made it possible to evaluate the activity of the main phyla as well as key species, including Faecalibacterium prausnitzii. Several correlations were identified between human and bacterial proteins. Proteins of the human host accounted for approximately 14% of the identified metaproteome and displayed variations both between and within individuals. The individually different human intestinal proteomes point to personalized host-microbiota interactions. Our findings indicate that analysis of the intestinal metaproteome can complement gene-based analysis and contributes to a thorough understanding of the activities of the microbiome and the relevant pathways in health and disease.
  • Douillard, Francois; de Vos, Willem M. (2014)
  • Fernandez, Maria; Hudson, John Andrew; Korpela, Riitta; de los Reyes-Gavilsn, Clara G. (2015)
  • Korpela, Katri; Salonen, Anne; Virta, Lauri J.; Kekkonen, Riina A.; Forslund, Kristoffer; Bork, Peer; de Vos, Willem M. (2016)
    Early-life antibiotic use is associated with increased risk for metabolic and immunological diseases, and mouse studies indicate a causal role of the disrupted microbiome. However, little is known about the impacts of antibiotics on the developing microbiome of children. Here we use phylogenetics, metagenomics and individual antibiotic purchase records to show that macrolide use in 2-7 year-old Finnish children (N = 142; sampled at two time points) is associated with a long-lasting shift in microbiota composition and metabolism. The shift includes depletion of Actinobacteria, increase in Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria, decrease in bile-salt hydrolase and increase in macrolide resistance. Furthermore, macrolide use in early life is associated with increased risk of asthma and predisposes to antibiotic-associated weight gain. Overweight and asthmatic children have distinct microbiota compositions. Penicillins leave a weaker mark on the microbiota than macrolides. Our results support the idea that, without compromising clinical practice, the impact on the intestinal microbiota should be considered when prescribing antibiotics.
  • Tytgat, Hanne L. P.; van Teijlingen, Nienke H.; Sullan, Ruby May A.; Douillard, Francois P.; Rasinkangas, Pia; Messing, Marcel; Reunanen, Justus; Satokari, Reetta; Vanderleyden, Jos; Dufrene, Yves F.; Geijtenbeek, Teunis B. H.; de Vos, Willem M.; Lebeer, Sarah (2016)
    Mapping of the microbial molecules underlying microbiota-host interactions is key to understand how microbiota preserve mucosal homeostasis. A pivotal family of such bacterial molecules are pili. Pili are proteinaceous cell wall appendages with a well-documented role in adhesion, whilst their role in immune interaction with the host is less established. Gram-positive pili are often posttranslationally modified by sortase-specific cleavage reactions and the formation of intramolecular peptide bonds. Here we report glycosylation as a new level of posttranslational modification of sortase-dependent pili of a beneficial microbiota species and its role in immune modulation. We focused on the SpaCBA pili of the model probiotic and beneficial human gut microbiota isolate Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG. A unique combination of molecular techniques, nanoscale mechanical and immunological approaches led to the identification of mannose and fucose residues on the SpaCBA pili. These glycans on the pili are recognized by human dendritic cells via the C-type lectin receptor DC-SIGN, a key carbohydrate-dependent immune tailoring pattern recognition receptor. This specific lectin-sugar interaction is moreover of functional importance and modulated the cytokine response of dendritic cells. This provides insight into the direct role bacterial glycoproteins can play in the immunomodulation of the host. Modification of the complex heterotrimeric pili of a model probiotic and microbiota isolate with mannose and fucose is of importance for the functional interaction with the host immune lectin receptor DC-SIGN on human dendritic cells. Our findings shed light on the yet underappreciated role of glycoconjugates in bacteria-host interactions.
  • Jäsberg, Heli; Tervahartiala, Taina; Sorsa, Timo; Söderling, Eva; Haukioja, Anna (2018)
    Objective: To study the effect of orally administered Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis BB-12 and Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG on the salivary levels of Matrix Metalloproteinases (MMP)-8, MMP-9 and of Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinases (TIMP)-1 in healthy adults. Furthermore, the correlations between MMP-8, MMP-9 and TIMP-1 and plaque and gingival indices, salivary mutans streptococci and lactobacilli counts, and stimulated saliva secretion rate were analysed. Design: The salivary samples originated from a randomized controlled trial where healthy student volunteers consumed probiotic or placebo lozenges twice a day for four weeks. The saliva samples were collected and clinical parameters measured at the baseline and at the end of the original study. For this study, the salivary levels of MMP-8, MMP-9 and TIMP-1 were analysed with immunofluorometric assay (IFMA) and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results: In the probiotic group (n = 29), salivary MMP-9 levels increased (p <0.01) and TIMP-1 levels decreased (p <0.01) significantly during the intervention. Furthermore, MMP-9/TIMP-1 ratio differed significantly from the baseline level (p <0.01). These changes were not observed in the control group (n = 31). In the whole data, salivary MMP-9 and gingival index correlated (r = 0.260, p <0.05 at baseline and r = 0.354, p <0.01 at the end of the study). Intergroup differences or correlations with other clinical parameters were not found. Probiotic consumption did not affect the saliva flow rate. Conclusions: Increased MMP-9 and decreased TIMP-1 levels in saliva may indicate that probiotics have immunomodulatory effects in the oral cavity. Furthermore, increased salivary MMP-9 levels may be an indication of the defensive potential of matrix metalloproteinases.