Mucosal fungi promote gut barrier function and social behavior via Type 17 immunity.

TitleMucosal fungi promote gut barrier function and social behavior via Type 17 immunity.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsLeonardi I, Gao IH, Lin W-Y, Allen M, Li XV, Fiers WD, De Celie MBialt, Putzel GG, Yantiss RK, Johncilla M, Colak D, Iliev ID
Date Published2022 Feb 16

Fungal communities (the mycobiota) are an integral part of the gut microbiota, and the disruption of their integrity contributes to local and gut-distal pathologies. Yet, the mechanisms by which intestinal fungi promote homeostasis remain unclear. We characterized the mycobiota biogeography along the gastrointestinal tract and identified a subset of fungi associated with the intestinal mucosa of mice and humans. Mucosa-associated fungi (MAF) reinforced intestinal epithelial function and protected mice against intestinal injury and bacterial infection. Notably, intestinal colonization with a defined consortium of MAF promoted social behavior in mice. The gut-local effects on barrier function were dependent on IL-22 production by CD4+ T helper cells, whereas the effects on social behavior were mediated through IL-17R-dependent signaling in neurons. Thus, the spatial organization of the gut mycobiota is associated with host-protective immunity and epithelial barrier function and might be a driver of the neuroimmune modulation of mouse behavior through complementary Type 17 immune mechanisms.

Alternate JournalCell
PubMed ID35176228