News & Views

Filter By:

  • Details about IgE-producing B cells in the gut in the context of food allergy are scarce, despite the frequent exposure of the gut and its associated lymphoid tissues to dietary antigens. A new study finds that IgE-producing B cells are enriched in gut tissues and are probably generated from local antibody isotype switching.

    • Onyinye I. Iweala
    • A. Wesley Burks
    News & Views
  • The microbial communities that occupy the intestinal tract are shaped by a variety of different factors, including the immune system. A new study has observed and quantified, at unprecedented depth, regionally distinct microbial and immune niches along the human colon using simultaneous analyses of the gut microbiota and neighbouring immune cells.

    • Rebecca N. Culver
    • Sean P. Spencer
    • Kerwyn Casey Huang
    News & Views
  • Colibactin-producing bacteria are abundant in the gut microbiota of colorectal cancer tumours and promote colon tumorigenesis in mouse models. Now, a new study demonstrates a direct link between exposure of human intestinal epithelial cells to colibactin and two unique mutational fingerprints found in human colorectal tumours.

    • Janelle C. Arthur
    News & Views
  • Genomic alterations are well-described in Barrett oesophagus and its sequela, oesophageal adenocarcinoma, but epigenomic events have not been so widely investigated. In a new study, Jammula et al. analysed the DNA methylation profiles of Barrett oesophagus, oesophageal adenocarcinoma and control tissues. Four molecular subtypes were identified, revealing four distinct epigenomic classes and potential therapeutic targets.

    • Stephen J. Meltzer
    News & Views
  • In a new study, cryopreserved human hepatocytes retrieved from livers deemed unsuitable for transplantation were thawed and encapsulated into alginate microbeads and then infused into the peritoneal cavity of a group of children with acute liver failure who were awaiting liver transplantation.

    • Patrick J. McKiernan
    • Robert H. Squires
    News & Views
  • Faecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) aims to restore an altered microbiota and has been suggested as a potential treatment option for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), among other diseases. A new study suggests that the use of a so-called superdonor is necessary to successfully treat patients with IBS using FMT.

    • Julia König
    • Robert Jan Brummer
    News & Views
  • A novel MRI gadolinium-based contrast agent designed to bind with collagen, a key component in liver fibrosis progression, provides direct quantification of collagen deposition in several preclinical liver disease models. This tool could have large implications in clinical diagnosis and drug trials.

    • Paul Kennedy
    • Bachir Taouli
    News & Views
  • Cancer therapies, in addition to inducing cell death, can trigger cellular senescence of tumour cells, and factors secreted from senescent cells might negatively affect the tumour microenvironment. A new study by Wang et al. shows that eradication of therapy-induced senescent cells (senolysis) can improve the outcome of liver cancer therapy.

    • Katharina Wolter
    • Lars Zender
    News & Views
  • A new study has identified an intestinal stem cell population involved in epithelial regeneration upon injury in mice and provided an in vitro tool with which to characterize the recurrent damage–repair mechanisms affecting chronic gastrointestinal inflammatory disorders, including inflammatory bowel disease.

    • Isabella Dotti
    • Azucena Salas
    News & Views
  • Live biotherapeutics have been used clinically both as defined probiotics and as undefined faecal microbiota transplants. Two new studies illustrate the risks of administering live microorganisms to highly compromised patients. These risks should be considered in the context of the potential therapeutic value of these treatments.

    • Colin Hill
    News & Views
  • A new study demonstrates a novel role for an endocannabinoid in promoting hepatocyte steatosis. The study describes a mode of bidirectional communication between the alcohol-injured hepatocyte and the glutamate-activated hepatic stellate cell. This intercellular communication represents a novel targetable pathogenic mechanism that could lead to new strategies to prevent fatty liver disease progression to cirrhosis.

    • Josepmaria Argemi
    • Ramon Bataller
    News & Views
  • A new study reveals that a novel serotonin sensor in the spore-forming gut bacteria, Turicibacter sanguinis, might be important for host lipid and steroid metabolism. These findings support the emerging concept that bidirectional signalling pathways can influence bacterial community structure and exert effects on host physiology.

    • Jill M. Hoffman
    • Kara G. Margolis
    News & Views
  • A new study is the first to investigate the relationship between liver-enriched antimicrobial peptide-2 (LEAP2) and different metabolic states, and highlights the reciprocal relationship between LEAP2 and ghrelin (known as the ‘hunger hormone’ for its role in stimulating appetite). These findings could have important implications given the worldwide increase in obesity since 1975.

    • Martha A. Schalla
    • Andreas Stengel
    News & Views
  • Screening and early diagnosis of pancreatic cancer are at the focal point of attention from researchers, physicians and patients. A new systematic review and recommendation statement by the USPSTF attempt to summarize the current state of affairs.

    • Marco J. Bruno
    News & Views
  • Whether to administer purgative cleansing and oral antibiotics before colon surgery as a method to prevent postoperative infections, once standard of care, is now being considered unnecessary with today’s advancements of care. A new study questions the efficacy of this bowel preparation approach with a prospective randomized trial.

    • John C. Alverdy
    • Benjamin D. Shogan
    News & Views
  • Living donor liver transplantation is a proven option for end-stage liver disease. In a new study, a pioneering multi-organ transplantation programme in Canada critically reviews the motivations and facilitators of anonymous adult living liver donors over a 12-year period, providing insights into how we can push forward ethical living organ donation for transplantation.

    • Robert A. Fisher
    News & Views
  • During the metastatic process, cancer cells spread from the primary tumour to distant organs. Although metastases are the primary cause of cancer mortality, the dynamics of the metastatic process remain largely unknown. A new study suggests that during colorectal cancer progression, metastatic seeding might occur before clinical detectability.

    • Alessandro Magrì
    • Alberto Bardelli
    News & Views
  • Multi-omics technologies in gut microbiome research provide a global view of changes in genetic, metabolic and biochemical processes. This approach has now been applied to the gut microbiota in the context of IBD, providing first steps towards a functional understanding of host–microbe interactions during disease pathogenesis.

    • Amira Metwaly
    • Dirk Haller
    News & Views
  • A new study has added valuable outcome data from adolescents 5 years after undergoing Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. By comparing outcomes from adolescents and adults, the study adds to the existing evidence base, highlighting metabolic and bariatric surgery as an increasingly valuable tool in the multidisciplinary management of adolescents with severe obesity.

    • Andrew J. Beamish
    • Torsten Olbers
    News & Views