The Gut Microbiome in Intestinal Fibrosis: Environmental Protector or Provocateur?

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Science Translational Medicine  19 Jun 2013:
Vol. 5, Issue 190, pp. 190ps10
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3004731

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In individuals with inflammatory bowel diseases, intestinal fibrosis is a serious clinical complication with no specific therapies. Patients develop bowel fistulae and strictures that usually require surgery and often reoccur. The main driver of gut fibrogenesis is believed to be chronic inflammation, which leads to mesenchymal cell recruitment and activation. Recent findings suggest that the environment—in particular, the microbiome—plays a critical role in this process.

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