CELIAC DISEASE

The enemy within the gut: bacterial pathogens in celiac autoimmunity

Microbially derived peptides that mimic immunogenic gliadin peptides in celiac disease have been identified using a structure- and sequence-guided search. T cell activation assays and crystal structures reveal that a protein from the commensal bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens can be processed and presented by antigen-presenting cells to potently activate T cells from patients with celiac disease.

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Fig. 1: Pathophysiology of the celiac lesion.
Fig. 2: Novel environmental factors that favor breakdown of oral tolerance to gluten.

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Acknowledgements

We thank Heather Galipeau for artistic assistance with the figures. E.F.V. is funded by CIHR #142773 and holds a Canada Research Chair. D.S. receives project-related funding from the German Research Foundation DFG Schu 646/17-1 (ATI), the Collaborative Research Center on Multiple Sclerosis (DFG SFB TR128), DFG SPP 1656 (Intestinal microbiota), and the Leibniz Foundation (Wheatscan, SAW-2016-DFA-2).

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Correspondence to Elena F. Verdu.

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Verdu, E.F., Schuppan, D. The enemy within the gut: bacterial pathogens in celiac autoimmunity. Nat Struct Mol Biol 27, 5–7 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41594-019-0360-5

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