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Inflamm Bowel Dis. 2010 Aug;16(8):1286-98. doi: 10.1002/ibd.21222.

Immunosuppressive effects via human intestinal dendritic cells of probiotic bacteria and steroids in the treatment of acute ulcerative colitis.

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  • 1Antigen Presentation Research Group, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, Northwick Park and St Mark's Campus, Watford Road, Harrow, UK.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In ulcerative colitis (UC) gut bacteria drive inflammation. Bacterial recognition and T-cell responses are shaped by intestinal dendritic cells (DCs); therapeutic effects of probiotic bacteria may relate to modulation of intestinal DC. The probiotic mixture, VSL#3, increases interleukin (IL)-10 and downregulates IL-12p40 production by DC in vitro. We evaluated in vivo effects of oral VSL#3 and steroids on colonic DC in patients with acute UC.

METHODS:

Rectal biopsies were obtained from patients with active UC before and after treatment with VSL#3, corticosteroids, or placebo, and from healthy controls. Myeloid colonic DC were studied from freshly isolated lamina propria cells using multicolor flow cytometry. Surface expression of activation markers, CD40, CD86, pattern recognition receptors, Toll-like receptor (TLR)-2 and TLR-4 were assessed. Changed function was measured from ongoing intracellular IL-10, IL-12p40, IL-6, and IL-13 production.

RESULTS:

Acute UC colonic myeloid DC were producing more IL-10 and IL-12p40 than control DC (P = 0.01). In VSL#3-treated patients DC TLR-2 expression decreased (P < 0.05), IL-10 production increased and IL-12p40 production decreased (P < 0.005); 10/14 patients on VSL#3 showed a clinical response. Corticosteroids also resulted in increased IL-10 and reduced IL-12p40 production by DC. Conversely, in patients on placebo, TLR-2 expression and intensity of staining for IL-12p40 and IL-6 increased (all P < 0.05); 5/14 patients on placebo showed a clinical response (P = NS).

CONCLUSIONS:

Despite small numbers of human colonic DC available, we showed that treatment of UC patients with probiotic VSL#3 and corticosteroids induced "favorable" intestinal DC function in vivo, increasing regulatory cytokines and lowering proinflammatory cytokines and TLR expression. These effects may contribute to therapeutic benefit.

PMID:
20155842
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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