Mouse background strain profoundly influences Paneth cell function and intestinal microbial composition.
ABSTRACT: Increasing evidence supports the central role of Paneth cells in maintaining intestinal host-microbial homeostasis. However, the direct impact of host genotype on Paneth cell function remains unclear. Here, we characterize key differences in Paneth cell function and intestinal microbial composition in two widely utilized, genetically distinct mouse strains (C57BL/6 and 129/SvEv). In doing so, we demonstrate critical influences of host genotype on Paneth cell activity and the enteric microbiota.Paneth cell numbers were determined by flow cytometry. Antimicrobial peptide (AMP) expression was evaluated using quantitative reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR), acid urea-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, and mass spectrometry. Effects of mouse background on microbial composition were assessed by reciprocal colonization of germ-free mice from both background strains, followed by compositional analysis of resultant gut bacterial communities using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis and 16 S qPCR. Our results revealed that 129/SvEv mice possessed fewer Paneth cells and a divergent AMP profile relative to C57BL/6 counterparts. Novel 129/SvEv á-defensin peptides were identified, including Defa2/18v, Defa11, Defa16, and Defa18. Host genotype profoundly affected the global profile of the intestinal microbiota, while both source and host factors were found to influence specific bacterial groups. Interestingly, ileal ?-defensins from 129/SvEv mice displayed attenuated antimicrobial activity against pro-inflammatory E. coli strains, a bacterial species found to be expanded in these animals.This work establishes the important impact of host genotype on Paneth cell function and the composition of the intestinal microbiota. It further identifies specific AMP and microbial alterations in two commonly used inbred mouse strains that have varying susceptibilities to a variety of disorders, ranging from obesity to intestinal inflammation. This will be critical for future studies utilizing these murine backgrounds to study the effects of Paneth cells and the intestinal microbiota on host health and disease.
Project description:The intestinal microbial ecosystem is actively regulated by Paneth cell-derived antimicrobial peptides such as ?-defensins. Various disorders, including graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), disrupt Paneth cell functions, resulting in unfavorably altered intestinal microbiota (dysbiosis), which further accelerates the underlying diseases. Current strategies to restore the gut ecosystem are bacteriotherapy such as fecal microbiota transplantation and probiotics, and no physiological approach has been developed so far. In this study, we demonstrate a novel approach to restore gut microbial ecology by Wnt agonist R-Spondin1 (R-Spo1) or recombinant ?-defensin in mice. R-Spo1 stimulates intestinal stem cells to differentiate to Paneth cells and enhances luminal secretion of ?-defensins. Administration of R-Spo1 or recombinant ?-defensin prevents GVHD-mediated dysbiosis, thus representing a novel and physiological approach at modifying the gut ecosystem to restore intestinal homeostasis and host-microbiota cross talk toward therapeutic benefits.
Project description:The intestinal epithelium is in direct contact with a vast microbiota, yet little is known about how epithelial cells defend the host against the heavy bacterial load. To address this question we studied Paneth cells, a key small intestinal epithelial lineage. We found that Paneth cells directly sense enteric bacteria through cell-autonomous MyD88-dependent toll-like receptor (TLR) activation, triggering expression of multiple antimicrobial factors. Paneth cells were essential for controlling intestinal barrier penetration by commensal and pathogenic bacteria. Furthermore, Paneth cell-intrinsic MyD88 signaling limited bacterial penetration of host tissues, revealing a role for epithelial MyD88 in maintaining intestinal homeostasis. Our findings establish that gut epithelia actively sense enteric bacteria and play an essential role in maintaining host-microbial homeostasis at the mucosal interface.
Project description:We evaluated whether a simplified human microbiota consortium (SIHUMI) induces colitis in germfree (GF) 129S6/SvEv (129) and C57BL/6 (B6) interleukin-10-deficient (IL-10(-/-)) mice, determined mouse strain effects on colitis and the microbiota, examined the effects of inflammation on relative bacterial composition, and identified immunodominant bacterial species in "humanized" IL-10(-/-) mice. GF wild-type (WT) and IL-10(-/-) 129 and B6 mice were colonized with 7 human-derived inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)-related intestinal bacteria and maintained under gnotobiotic conditions. Quantification of bacteria in feces, ileal and colonic contents, and tissues was performed using 16S rRNA gene selective quantitative PCR. Colonic segments were scored histologically, and gamma interferon (IFN-?), IL-12p40, and IL-17 levels were measured in supernatants of unstimulated colonic tissue explants and of mesenteric lymph node (MLN) cells stimulated by lysates of individual or aggregate bacterial strains. Relative bacterial species abundances changed over time and differed between 129 and B6 mice, WT and IL-10(-/-) mice, luminal and mucosal samples, and ileal and colonic or fecal samples. SIHUMI induced colitis in all IL-10(-/-) mice, with more aggressive colitis and MLN cell activation in 129 mice. Escherichia coli LF82 and Ruminococcus gnavus lysates induced dominant effector ex vivo MLN TH1 and TH17 responses, although the bacterial mucosal concentrations were low. In summary, this study shows that a simplified human bacterial consortium induces colitis in ex-GF 129 and B6 IL-10(-/-) mice. Relative concentrations of individual SIHUMI species are determined by host genotype, the presence of inflammation, and anatomical location. A subset of IBD-relevant human enteric bacterial species preferentially stimulates bacterial antigen-specific TH1 and TH17 immune responses in this model, independent of luminal and mucosal bacterial concentrations.
Project description:Dissemination of antibiotic resistance (AR) genes, often on plasmids, leads to antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, which is a major problem for animal and public health. Bacterial conjugation is the primary route of AR gene transfer in the mammalian gastrointestinal tract. Significant gaps in knowledge about which gastrointestinal communities and host factors promote plasmid transfer remain. Here, we used Salmonella enterica serovar Kentucky strain CVM29188 carrying plasmid pCVM29188_146 (harboring streptomycin and tetracycline resistance genes) to assess plasmid transfer to Escherichia coli under in vitro conditions and in various mouse strains with a conventional or defined microbiota. As an initial test, the transfer of pCVM29188_146 to the E. coli strains was confirmed in vitro Colonization resistance and, therefore, a lack of plasmid transfer were found in wild-type mice harboring a conventional microbiota. Thus, mice harboring the altered Schaedler flora (ASF), or ASF mice, were used to probe for host factors in the context of a defined microbiota. To assess the influence of inflammation on plasmid transfer, we compared interleukin-10 gene-deficient 129S6/SvEv ASF mice (proinflammatory environment) to wild-type 129S6/SvEv ASF mice and found no difference in transconjugant yields. In contrast, the mouse strain influenced plasmid transfer, as C3H/HeN ASF mice had significantly lower levels of transconjugants than 129S6/SvEv ASF mice. Although gastrointestinal members were identical between the ASF mouse strains, a few differences from C3H/HeN ASF mice were detected, with C3H/HeN ASF mice having significantly lower abundances of ASF members 356 (Clostridium sp.), 492 (Eubacterium plexicaudatum), and 502 (Clostridium sp.) than 129S6/SvEv ASF mice. Overall, we demonstrate that microbiota complexity and mouse genetic background influence in vivo plasmid transfer.IMPORTANCE Antibiotic resistance is a threat to public health. Many clinically relevant antibiotic resistance genes are carried on plasmids that can be transferred to other bacterial members in the gastrointestinal tract. The current study used a murine model to study the transfer of a large antibiotic resistance plasmid from a foodborne Salmonella strain to a gut commensal E. coli strain in the gastrointestinal tract. We found that different mouse genetic backgrounds and a different diversity of microbial communities influenced the level of Escherichia coli that acquired the plasmid in the gastrointestinal tract. This study suggests that the complexity of the microbial community and host genetics influence plasmid transfer from donor to recipient bacteria.
Project description:Host-microbiome co-evolution drives homeostasis and disease susceptibility, yet regulatory principles governing the integrated intestinal host-commensal microenvironment remain obscure. While inflammasome signaling participates in these interactions, its activators and microbiome-modulating mechanisms are unknown. Here, we demonstrate that the microbiota-associated metabolites taurine, histamine, and spermine shape the host-microbiome interface by co-modulating NLRP6 inflammasome signaling, epithelial IL-18 secretion, and downstream anti-microbial peptide (AMP) profiles. Distortion of this balanced AMP landscape by inflammasome deficiency drives dysbiosis development. Upon fecal transfer, colitis-inducing microbiota hijacks this microenvironment-orchestrating machinery through metabolite-mediated inflammasome suppression, leading to distorted AMP balance favoring its preferential colonization. Restoration of the metabolite-inflammasome-AMP axis reinstates a normal microbiota and ameliorates colitis. Together, we identify microbial modulators of the NLRP6 inflammasome and highlight mechanisms by which microbiome-host interactions cooperatively drive microbial community stability through metabolite-mediated innate immune modulation. Therefore, targeted "postbiotic" metabolomic intervention may restore a normal microenvironment as treatment or prevention of dysbiosis-driven diseases.
Project description:Paneth cells, specialized secretory epithelial cells of the small intestine, play a pivotal role in host defense and regulation of microbiota by producing antimicrobial peptides especially-but not only-the human ?-defensin 5 (HD5) and HD6. In small intestinal Crohn's disease (CD) which is an entity of inflammatory bowel diseases, the expression of HD5 and HD6 is specifically compromised leading to a disturbed barrier and change in the microbial community. Different genetically driven but also non-genetic defects associated with small intestinal CD affect different lines of antimicrobial Paneth cell functions. In this review, we focus on the mechanisms and the crosstalk of Paneth cells and bone marrow-derived cells and highlight recent studies about the role of the Wnt signaling pathway in this connection of ileal CD. In summary, different lines of investigations led by us but also now numerous other groups support and reconfirm the proposed classification of this disease entity as Paneth's disease.
Project description:Antimicrobial peptides are important effectors of innate immunity throughout the plant and animal kingdoms. In the mammalian small intestine, Paneth cell alpha-defensins are antimicrobial peptides that contribute to host defense against enteric pathogens. To determine if alpha-defensins also govern intestinal microbial ecology, we analyzed the intestinal microbiota of mice expressing a human alpha-defensin gene (DEFA5) and in mice lacking an enzyme required for the processing of mouse alpha-defensins. In these complementary models, we detected significant alpha-defensin-dependent changes in microbiota composition, but not in total bacterial numbers. Furthermore, DEFA5-expressing mice had striking losses of segmented filamentous bacteria and fewer interleukin 17 (IL-17)-producing lamina propria T cells. Our data ascribe a new homeostatic role to alpha-defensins in regulating the makeup of the commensal microbiota.
Project description:Signaling by Toll-like receptors (TLRs) on intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) is critical for intestinal homeostasis. To visualize epithelial expression of individual TLRs in vivo, we generated five strains of reporter mice. These mice revealed that TLR expression varied dramatically along the length of the intestine. Indeed, small intestine (SI) IECs expressed low levels of multiple TLRs that were highly expressed by colonic IECs. TLR5 expression was restricted to Paneth cells in the SI epithelium. Intestinal organoid experiments revealed that TLR signaling in Paneth cells or colonic IECs induced a core set of host defense genes, but this set did not include antimicrobial peptides, which instead were induced indirectly by inflammatory cytokines. This comprehensive blueprint of TLR expression and function in IECs reveals unexpected diversity in the responsiveness of IECs to microbial stimuli, and together with the associated reporter strains, provides a resource for further study of innate immunity.
Project description:Paneth cell-derived enteric antimicrobial peptides significantly contribute to antibacterial host defense and host-microbial homeostasis. Regulation occurs by enzymatic processing and release into the small intestinal lumen, but the stimuli involved are incompletely understood. Here, the capacity of various microbial and immune stimuli to induce antimicrobial peptide release from small intestinal tissue was systematically evaluated using antibacterial activity testing, immunostaining for Paneth cell granules and mass spectrometry. We confirmed the stimulatory activity of the muscarinic receptor agonist carbachol and the nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain ligand muramyl dipeptide. In contrast, no release of antibacterial activity was noted after treatment with the Toll-like receptor ligands poly(I:C), lipopolysaccharide or CpG, and the cytokines interleukin (IL)-15, IL-22, IL-28 and interferon-?. Rapid Paneth cell degranulation and antimicrobial activity release, however, was observed after stimulation with the endogenous mediators IL-4 and IL-13. This process required phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and was associated with protein kinase B phosphorylation in Paneth cells. Flow cytometric analysis confirmed expression of the IL-13 receptor ?1 on isolated Paneth cells. Our findings identify a novel role of IL-13 as inducer of Paneth cell degranulation and enteric antimicrobial peptide release. IL-13 may thus contribute to mucosal antimicrobial host defense and host microbial homeostasis.
Project description:Antimicrobial proteins influence intestinal microbial ecology and limit proliferation of pathogens, yet the regulation of their expression has only been partially elucidated. Here, we have identified a putative pathway involving epithelial cells and intestinal intraepithelial lymphocytes (iIELs) that leads to antimicrobial protein (AMP) production by Paneth cells. Mice lacking ?? iIELs (TCR?(-/-)) express significantly reduced levels of the AMP angiogenin 4 (Ang4). These mice were also unable to up-regulate Ang4 production following oral challenge by Salmonella, leading to higher levels of mucosal invasion compared to their wild type counterparts during the first 2 hours post-challenge. The transfer of ?? iIELs from wild type (WT) mice to TCR?(-/-) mice restored Ang4 production and Salmonella invasion levels were reduced to those obtained in WT mice. The ability to restore Ang4 production in TCR?(-/-) mice was shown to be restricted to ?? iIELs expressing V?7-encoded TCRs. Using a novel intestinal crypt co-culture system we identified a putative pathway of Ang4 production initiated by exposure to Salmonella, intestinal commensals or microbial antigens that induced intestinal epithelial cells to produce cytokines including IL?23 in a TLR-mediated manner. Exposure of TCR-V?7(+) ?? iIELs to IL-23 promoted IL?22 production, which triggered Paneth cells to secrete Ang4. These findings identify a novel role for ?? iIELs in mucosal defence through sensing immediate epithelial cell cytokine responses and influencing AMP production. This in turn can contribute to the maintenance of intestinal microbial homeostasis and epithelial barrier function, and limit pathogen invasion.