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We read with interest the work by Camilleri and Vella1 reporting the potential role of ‘leaky gut’ or reduced barrier function in some pathophysiological states. The detrimental effects of dietary emulsifiers on host intestinal barrier have also been evaluated.1–3 However, their role on promoting skin-related diseases and whether modulation of the microbiota can reversibly impact their underlying chemical effects are unknown. Herein, we showed that a common emulsifier, polysorbate-80 (P80), together with a soybean-deprived diet, promoted alopecia in mice. Importantly, the pathogenic process was exacerbated by antibiotics through aggravating gut dysbiosis and reversed following faecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) or administration of a targeted probiotic (Bifidobacterium longum HK003) isolated from faeces of healthy subjects (figures 1A–C and 2A,B).
Contributors SL conceived the study, performed the experiments and data analysis, and drafted the manuscript. JZ performed the experiments, supervised the study and revised the manuscript. TZ and KY performed the experiments and provided intellectual contribution and critical comments on the manuscript. LCC performed the experiments. WYZ performed probiotics isolation and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) analysis. FKLC, PKSC and WKKW provided intellectual contribution and critical comments on the manuscript. SCN supervised the study and revised the manuscript.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests FKLC and SCN are co-founders and in the board of GenieBiome Ltd. JZ, FKLC, and SCN are inventors of a patent application (US provisional patent application no. 63/281,887) in connection with this work. WT is employee of GenieBiome Ltd. All other authors declare that there are no competing interests.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.
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