Gut Microbiota Modulation and Mucosal Immunity: Focus on Rifaximin

Author(s): Loris R. Lopetuso, Valentina Petito, Franco Scaldaferri, Antonio Gasbarrini.

Journal Name: Mini-Reviews in Medicinal Chemistry

Volume 16 , Issue 3 , 2016

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Abstract:

The gastrointestinal tract is a complex and dynamic network where an intricate and mutualistic symbiosis modulates the relationship between the host and the microbiota in order to establish and ensure gut homeostasis. Every day, thousands of compounds derived from food and microorganisms come in contact with the intestinal mucosa. This interaction requires a complex defense system that separates intestinal contents from the host tissues, regulates nutrient absorption, and allows tolerance between the resident bacterial flora and the mucosal immune system, while inhibiting translocation of infectious agents to the inner tissues. Unfavorable alteration of microbiota composition has been implicated in hepatic, gastrointestinal, and perhaps also systemic disorders. In this scenario, gut microbiota modulation represents an intriguing field and can be obtained by several approaches, including antibiotics, proand pre-biotics supplementation. Among antibiotics, Rifaximin seems to be a promising antibiotic to treat conditions related to gut microbiota imbalance and to potentially modulate intestinal homeostasis. This review focuses on what is currently known regarding the possible role of Rifaximin in restoring normal gut immune physiology and a healthy gutliver axis. Detailed mechanistic studies will improve the development of targeted therapies that may shape gut microflora composition with the end goal of promoting gut health.

Keywords: Encephalopathy, gut barrier, gut-liver axis, gut microbiota, mucosal immunity, rifaximin.

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Article Details

VOLUME: 16
ISSUE: 3
Year: 2016
Page: [179 - 185]
Pages: 7
DOI: 10.2174/138955751603151126121633
Price: $58

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