Short-Term Dietary Restriction Potentiates an Anti-Inflammatory Circulating Mucosal-Associated Invariant T-Cell Response

Nutrients. 2024 Apr 22;16(8):1245. doi: 10.3390/nu16081245.


Short-term protein-calorie dietary restriction (StDR) is a promising preoperative strategy for modulating postoperative inflammation. We have previously shown marked gut microbial activity during StDR, but relationships between StDR, the gut microbiome, and systemic immunity remain poorly understood. Mucosal-associated invariant T-cells (MAITs) are enriched on mucosal surfaces and in circulation, bridge innate and adaptive immunity, are sensitive to gut microbial changes, and may mediate systemic responses to StDR. Herein, we characterized the MAIT transcriptomic response to StDR using single-cell RNA sequencing of human PBMCs and evaluated gut microbial species-level changes through sequencing of stool samples. Healthy volunteers underwent 4 days of DR during which blood and stool samples were collected before, during, and after DR. MAITs composed 2.4% of PBMCs. More MAIT genes were differentially downregulated during DR, particularly genes associated with MAIT activation (CD69), regulation of pro-inflammatory signaling (IL1, IL6, IL10, TNFα), and T-cell co-stimulation (CD40/CD40L, CD28), whereas genes associated with anti-inflammatory IL10 signaling were upregulated. Stool analysis showed a decreased abundance of multiple MAIT-stimulating Bacteroides species during DR. The analyses suggest that StDR potentiates an anti-inflammatory MAIT immunophenotype through modulation of TCR-dependent signaling, potentially secondary to gut microbial species-level changes.

Keywords: MAITs; immune response; inflammation; mucosal-associated invariant T-cells; short-term dietary restriction.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Caloric Restriction*
  • Feces / microbiology
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome*
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • Male
  • Mucosal-Associated Invariant T Cells* / immunology
  • Transcriptome
  • Young Adult

Grants and funding

This research received no external funding.