Acute intraperitoneal lipopolysaccharide influences the immune system in the absence of gut dysbiosis

There is bidirectional communication between the immune system and the gut microbiome, however the precise mechanisms regulating this crosstalk are not well understood. Microbial‐associated molecular patterns (MAMPs) within the gut, including lipopolysaccharide (LPS) that produces a quick and robust activation of the immune system, may be one way by which these interactions occur. Endogenous levels of LPS in the gut are low enough that they do not usually cause disease, although, in times of increased LPS loads, they may be capable of increasing vulnerability of the gut to pathogenic bacteria. Furthermore, chronic, low‐grade inflammation can have lasting effects on the gut, but the effects of acute inflammation on gut communities have not been thoroughly assessed. In this study, we first investigated whether a single modest dose of LPS administered to adult male and female Siberian hamsters (Phodopus sungorus) activated the immune system by measuring levels of circulating cortisol and the proinflammatory cytokine TNF‐α in the liver compared with saline‐treated animals. We then investigated whether this same acute dose of LPS altered the microbiome 48 h after treatment. We found that, although LPS increased cortisol and liver cytokine levels, and produced changes in food intake and body mass in both sexes, immunological changes were independent of gut dysbiosis 48 h after LPS injection. These data suggest that an acute immune activation may not be capable of altering the gut microbiome in healthy individuals. It is likely, however, that this type of immune challenge may have other physiological impacts on the gut's vulnerability, and future studies will investigate these relationships further.

Publication Date:
Mar 13 2018
Date Submitted:
Jul 01 2019
Physiological Reports
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 Record created 2019-07-01, last modified 2019-07-24

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