Gut microbiome metabolites in MS inflammation and neurodegeneration

A01

The involvement of nutrition and dietary habits, e.g. the Western diet in MS disease pathogenesis, has only recently become ever more evident. However there is an unmet need for understanding the functional impact of the gut microbiome on disease etiology, pathogenesis, and therapy. We had previously identified fatty acids as metabolites that are linked with the gut associated immune response in the context of MS. In contrast to long chain fatty acids, short chain fatty acids (SCFA) lead to increased differentiation of anti-inflammatory regulatory T cells (Treg), and to a significant amelioration of disease severity in the EAE by daily supplementation with propionic acid (PA). The results of our project clearly indicate that the systemic effect of gut microbiome metabolites on both, immune cells and cells of the enteric/central nervous system, needs to be investigated in more detail. Our main questions are:

    1. Does PA have a direct neuroprotective/neuroregenerative impact? If so, what are the mechanisms?
    2. What are the range of effects of PA on the gut tissue? Are other immune cell subsets affected, i.e. resident myeloid cells?
    3. Does long-term PA supplementation lead to a reversal of MS associated gut microbiome changes (towards healthy controls)?
    4. Which metabolic factors in the gut are altered in response to PA supplementation?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Principal Investigators:

Univ.-Prof. Dr. med. Aiden Haghikia
Universitätsklinik für Neurologie
Magdeburg
aiden.haghikia@med.ovgu.de

Univ.-Prof. Dr. med. Ralf Gold
Universitätsklinik für Neurologie
Bochum
ralf.gold@rub.de

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