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The colonic mucus protection depends on the microbiota

Magazine article
Authors Ana María Rodríguez-Piñeiro
Malin E V Johansson
Published in Gut microbes
Volume 6
Issue 5
Pages 326-30
ISSN 1949-0976
Publication year 2015
Published at Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Pages 326-30
Language en
Keywords Muc2; colon, commensal bacteria, ileum; intestine, mucus, penetrability, proteomics
Subject categories Basic Medicine, Cell and Molecular Biology, Medical cell biology, Medical microbiology, Immunobiology


The intestinal mucus is a pivotal part of our intestinal protection. It provides slow diffusion of protective molecules, trapping of luminal material as bacteria and smooth transport in the small intestine. In colon it restricts bacterial access to the epithelium limiting the responses to the enormous bacterial load present at this location. The development of these systems depends on the microbiota composition as seen in our recent study comparing the mucus phenotype in 2 colonies kept in different husbandries within the same SPF animal facility. One colony had impenetrable colonic mucus while the other colony had more penetrable mucus. The mucus phenotypes were transmitted via the microbiota and clear differences in its composition could be detected. Candidates associated with the different colonies were identified but the observed mucus difference could not be assigned to a specific bacterium.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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