Regulation of intestinal microbiota by the NLR protein family
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The human intestine harbors a diverse microbial community consisting of a large number of bacteria and other micro-organisms that have co-evolved with the host intestinal immune system. During this process, microbiota and the host immune system shape one another by various mechanisms to achieve a successful symbiotic relationship. An increasing amount of evidence suggests that dysbiosis--the breakdown of such harmonized colonization--may result in infectious and inflammatory disorders, and recent advances in our studies indicate that receptors such as Toll-like receptors and NLR (nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-like receptor; or nucleotide-binding domain- and leucine-rich repeat-containing receptor) proteins that detect micro-organisms and their products play a critical role in maintaining intestinal homeostasis. In this review, we summarize the role of NLR proteins in the regulation of intestinal microbiota. NLR proteins belong to a diverse family of cytoplasmic microbial sensors, mutations of which are involved in various disorders, including inflammatory bowel diseases. Understanding of the different roles of NLR family proteins in the intestine is, therefore, an important step towards the development of therapeutics against digestive diseases.
author list (cited authors)
Biswas, A., & Kobayashi, K. S.