Research Highlights: Infection Encourages Production of Taurine to Improve Microbiota

Research Highlights: Infection trains the host for microbiota-enhanced resistance to pathogens

  • Microbiome protects host from infections.
  • This process of protection is called colonization resistance.
  • However, this fundamental process remains largely unknown.
  • Study shows that previously infected hosts display improved gut microbiota to resist infection.
  • This micro-community improvement is associated with changes in bile acid metabolism.
  • The remodeled micro-community includes expanded taxa that utilize the sulfonic acid taurine.
  • Taurine is involve in various physiological functions such as bile acid conjugation and cell membrane stabilization.[1]
  • Additionally, supplying external taurine can induce this alteration to improve resistance.
  • Taurine encourages the microbiome to produce sulfide which is key to host invasion by a number of pathogens.
  • Sulfide is an organic compound that inhibits cellular respiration.
  • Pharmaceutical removal of sulfide affects the composition of microbiota and encourages pathogen invasion.
  • The result reveals that infection can deploy taurine as a nutrient to improve microbiota and promote resistance to future infection.

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