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A novel next-generation probiotic: new opportunity for treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

The roles of gut microbiota in host health development are being rapidly recognized, which leads to great potentials for applications in precision and translational medicine. Under financial supports from Ministry of Science and Technology, Dr. Hsin-Chih Lai and Dr. Tzu-Lung Lin from Chang-Gung University in collaboration with Dr. Chia-Chen Lu from Fu-Jen Catholic University have identified a commensal bacterial strain, Parabacteroides goldsteinii MTS01, and its derived anti-inflammatory lipopolysaccharides (Pg-LPS) can ameliorate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The results were published in Gut in March 2021.


COPD has a huge global prevalence and causes high mortality due to smoking and air pollutions. However, ways of management of COPD are still encountered with difficulty, and persistent and progressive pulmonary inflammation is still common among patients.


For the first time, the team established the gut microbiota-lung COPD axis using a mouse cigarette smoking model, and strategy of faecal microbiota transplantation and antibiotics treatment. An intestinal commensal P. goldsteinii was highlighted to be significantly negatively associated with severity of COPD. Oral administration of isolated P. goldsteinii MTS01 on its own significantly ameliorated COPD syndromes, characterized by reducing inflammation and improving cellular ribosomal biogenesis activity and mitochondrial functions in intestine. On top of these, systematic aberrant amino acids metabolism in sera, and overwhelming lung tissue inflammations were restored. The LPS derived from P. goldsteinii (Pg-LPS) was further characterized to function as an TLR4 receptor antagonist and work as an active component that ameliorates COPD.


These findings highlighted the important causality role of gut microbiota dysbiosis in COPD pathogenesis. Furthermore, development of a potential next-generation probiotic bacterium whose LPS may work as a COPD ameliorating agent was reported. The team’s previous study published in Gut in February 2019 also revealed P. goldsteinii can ameliorate diet-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome. In the future, the beneficial bacterial strain (P. goldsteinii MTS01), together with its derived LPS (Pg-LPS) can be developed as agents for clinical practice in chronic inflammations.


Author Information:

Hsin-Chih Lai, Professor

Dr. Hsin-Chih Lai received Ph.D at Cambridge University, U.K.. Currently he is an adjunct Professor at National Taiwan University. Main research interests are on deciphering the interplay among traditional Chinese Medicine, gut microbiome and host Inflammation/Immunity. Gut microbiome has been widely studied to be closely linked to immune development and progression of inflammatory diseases. These occur in both local gastrointestinal (GI) tract and also systematic extra-GI regions. Dr. Lai’s previous functional discovery includes novel bioactive components from traditional medicinal herbs (prebiotics), and important bacterial strains (next generation probiotics) on amelioration of obesity and metabolic syndromes. Furthermore, active postbiotics derived from probiotics are also identified. Using multi-omics approach, Dr. Lai’s research extends to amelioration of many other chronic inflammation related diseases such as COPD, CRC, neuroinflammation, and CKD…etc.. Dr. Lai’s long term research goal is to identify novel prebiotics, probiotics and postbiotics for prevention and treatment of chronic inflammation related diseases.


Chia-Chen Lu, Associate Professor

Interactions between symbiotic microbes and the hosts they colonize are central to both health and disease development in hosts. However, whether there is a causative relationship between gut microbiota composition and chronic inflammatory lung diseases development is not totally clear. Dr. Lu is currently working in Fu Jen Catholic University as a head of Respiratory Therapy Department. Her primary interests are in interaction of microbes with the host respiratory tracts. These include chronic inflammatory lung diseases such as COPD and lung cancer. In the future, the development of probiotic-based immune therapy for amelioration of respiratory tracts related diseases will be the main focus.



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Last Modified : 2021/04/14