The Gut Microbiota: Emerging Evidence in Autoimmune Diseases

Trends Mol Med. 2020 Sep;26(9):862-873. doi: 10.1016/j.molmed.2020.04.001. Epub 2020 May 10.


The pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases (AIDs) is not only attributed to genetic susceptibilities but also environmental factors, among which, disturbed gut microbiota has attracted increasing attention. Compositional and functional changes of gut microbiota have been reported in various AIDs, and increasing evidence suggests that disturbed gut microbiota contributes to their immunopathogenesis. The accepted mechanisms include abnormal microbial translocation, molecular mimicry, and dysregulation of both local and systemic immunity. Studies have also suggested microbiota-based classification models and therapeutic interventions for patients with AIDs. Further in-depth mechanistic studies on microbiota-autoimmunity interplay in AIDs are urgently needed and underway to explore novel and precise diagnostic biomarkers and develop disease and patient-tailored therapeutic strategies.

Keywords: autoimmune diseases; gut microbiota; immunopathogenesis; microbial therapeutic intervention.

Publication types

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