Human Gut Microbiome may Help Suppress MS

Prevetella stops MS

A growing body of evidence suggests that disruption of the gut microbiome may trigger inflammatory diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), but we don’t really know how or why.


Now teams of researchers at the Mayo Clinic and the University of Iowa have discovered that a species of bacteria called Prevotella histicola prevents MS from developing in a preclinical mouse model.


In the study published in the journal Cell Reports, the teams studied bacterial cultures grown from intestinal biopsies from patients with celiac disease to determine which gut bacteria are capable of controlling immune responses.


The team isolated three bacterial strains and found that one (P. histicola) had the ability to suppress MS in a preclinical animal model of the disease.


P. histicola suppresses the disease by controlling the immune system. The researchers discovered that the bacteria decrease the expression of two inflammatory molecules - interferon gamma and interleukin 17, and increase the numbers of immune cells that fight disease (T-cells, dendritic cells and macrophages).


The team concludes that Prevotella bacteria will play an important in future MS treatments.