The gut microbiome (bacteria) can play a strong role in food allergies. Food allergy is a clinical and public health problem that affects up to 10% of the US population. It is defined as an adverse health effect arising from a specific immune response that occurs on exposure to a food. IgE food mediated allergy is a relative immediate response that affects the skin, respiratory, gastrointestinal and cardiac symptoms. The cause of food allergy involves deviation from a default state of immune tolerance that is likely driven by antigen exposure, gut bacteria and their interactions.
The gut bacteria outnumber human cells and genes, motivating interest in how their dysregulation may influence host immunologic development and risk for allergic disorders. Growing evidence supports a potential role for the gut microbiome in the pathogenesis and course of food allergy. Future investigations will direct areas where interventions can take place in the prevention of food allergies.
There is growing evidence that supports a role for the gut microbiome (The entire habitat, including the micorbiota, their genomes (genes) and the surrounding site-specific conditions). Gut dysbiosis (descriptive for imbalance in a microbiome, such as lack of homeostasis in microbial composition or functions) may precede the development of food allergy, and the timing of such dysbiosis is critical.
Gut microbiota (the assemblage of all microorganisms present in a defined site or niche) with individual food allergies may be distinct.
Mouse models suggest that gut microbiota affect food allergy susceptibility by modulating type 2 immunity, influencing immune maturation and tolerance, regulating basophil populations and promoting intestinal barrier function.
There are potential modalities for gut microbiome manipulation.
- Diet-high fiber
- Synbiotics (products that contain both prebiotics and probiotics) Bifidobacterium breve M-16v
- Probiotics (Lactobacillus casei, Bifidobacterium lactic, Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG).
- Prebiotics- Nondigestible Oligosaccharides
- Microbiota Transplant-Oral encapsulated fecal microbiota transplantation
By advancing research on the gut microbiome in food allergy, we can further our understanding of food allergy and derive new approaches for its prevention and therapy.