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Gut 54:317-320 doi:10.1136/gut.2004.053785
  • Leading article

Microbes, immunoregulation, and the gut

  1. G A W Rook,
  2. L R Brunet
  1. Centre for Infectious Diseases and International Health, Windeyer Institute of Medical Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to:
    Professor G Rook
    Centre for Infectious Diseases and International Health, Windeyer Institute of Medical Sciences, Royal Free and University College Medical School, 46 Cleveland St, London W1T 4JF, UK; g.rookucl.ac.uk
  • Received 10 September 2004
  • Accepted 21 September 2004

Abstract

Two distinct, but rapidly converging, areas of research (the hygiene hypothesis and the study of probiotic/prebiotic effects) have emphasised the need to understand, and ultimately to manipulate, our physiological interactions with commensal flora, and with other transient but harmless organisms from the environment that affect immunoregulatory circuits. The story began with allergic disorders but now inflammatory bowel disease is increasingly involved.

Footnotes

  • Conflict of interest: None declared.