Volume 14 Issue 5, May 2017

Volume 14 Issue 5

Cover image supplied by Carolina Tropini, Sonnenburg Group, Stanford University, USA, who is funded by a James S. McDonnell fellowship. Fluorescent in situ hybridization of mouse colon colonized with gnotobiotic microbiota. Tissue was stained by DAPI and the mucus labelled with UEA-1 (Ulex europaeus agglutinin I), bacteria were labelled with fluorescent DNA probes.

Research Highlights

News and Views

  • News & Views |

    Disruption of the microbiota during early life can have important consequences for infant health outcomes; in particular, antibiotic usage is linked to an increased risk of pneumonia. A new study has identified cellular and molecular mediators involved in the crosstalk between early-life gut bacterial colonization and development of lung immunity against pneumonia in newborn mice.

    • Sabrina Tamburini
    •  & Jose C. Clemente
  • News & Views |

    A new study provides an important proof-of-concept that viral replication can be substantially reduced for several weeks by a single injection of a tissue-targeted cellular microRNA antagonist, inhibiting a key component in a viral lifecycle. This result paves the way to the development of novel potent host-targeted antiviral approaches based on microRNA antagonism.

    • Jean-Michel Pawlotsky
  • News & Views |

    A new genome-wide association study (GWAS) has been conducted to discover genetic contributions that can explain disease prognosis in Crohn's disease. This understudied area deserves attention for discovering genetic variants responsible for disease severity, as well as encouraging scientists to analyse or reanalyse GWAS data using various clinically important endophenotypes.

    • Kajari Mondal
    •  & Subra Kugathasan


  • Review Article |

    The management of IBD has undergone major advances with the development of biologic agents. Here, Markus Neurath provides an overview of current and future therapeutic targets for IBD, including insights into the mechanisms and rationale behind such approaches.

    • Markus F. Neurath
  • Review Article |

    Results from genetic studies of primary sclerosing cholangitis have identified a number of risk loci associated with the disease. Here, Jiang and Karlsen comprehensively discuss the identity and function of risk genes, the potential roles they have in pathogenesis and future research efforts.

    • Xiaojun Jiang
    •  & Tom H. Karlsen
  • Review Article |

    Pancreatic acinar cells show high plasticity and can undergo acinar-to-ductal metaplasia, which might be an initiating event for pancreatic cancer. Here, the determinants of acinar cell plasticity are discussed, as well as signalling events that drive acinar-to-ductal metaplasia and their contribution to oncogenesis.

    • Peter Storz
  • Review Article |

    Various technologies and systems have been developed to improve adenoma detection rate during colonoscopy and thereby reduce colorectal cancer incidence. Here, Matsuda and colleagues discuss how add-on devices, colonoscope advances and image-enhanced endoscopy might assist in the detection of polyps and adenomas.

    • Takahisa Matsuda
    • , Akiko Ono
    • , Masau Sekiguchi
    • , Takahiro Fujii
    •  & Yutaka Saito