Microbiota and dietary interactions: an update to the hygiene hypothesis?

Allergy. 2012 Apr;67(4):451-61. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.2011.02783.x. Epub 2012 Jan 19.


The dramatic increase in the incidence and severity of allergy and asthma has been proposed to be linked with an altered exposure to, and colonization by, micro-organisms, particularly early in life. However, other lifestyle factors such as diet and physical activity are also thought to be important, and it is likely that multiple environmental factors with currently unrecognized interactions contribute to the atopic state. This review will focus on the potential role of microbial metabolites in immunoregulatory functions and highlights the known molecular mechanisms, which may mediate the interactions between diet, microbiota, and protection from allergy and asthma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diet*
  • Humans
  • Hygiene Hypothesis*
  • Hypersensitivity / etiology*
  • Hypersensitivity / immunology
  • Metagenome / immunology*