Role of gut microbiota in intestinal wound healing and barrier function

Ashfaqul Alam, Andrew Neish

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

89 Scopus citations


The mammalian intestine harbors a highly complex and abundant ensemble of bacteria that flourish in a nutrient-rich environment while profoundly influencing many aspects of host biology. The intestine coevolved with its resident microbes in a manner where the mucosa developed a barrier function to segregate the resident microbes from the rest of the body, and yet paradoxically, allowing integration of microbial signals for the host benefit. In this review, we provided a comprehensive overview of why the gut microbiota is key to the efficient development and maintenance of the intestinal barrier. We also highlighted how a destabilized equilibrium between gut microbiota and the host may eventuate in a wide range of intestinal diseases characterized by the disrupted intestinal barrier. Finally, the review delineated how microenvironmental changes in the injured mucosa result in an enrichment of a pro-regenerating consortium of bacteria, which augments mucosal wound repair and restoration of barrier functions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1539595
JournalTissue Barriers
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 3 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, © 2018 Taylor & Francis.


  • gut microbiota
  • intestinal barrier function
  • intestinal inflammation
  • intestinal wound healing
  • microbiome
  • mucosal wound microenvironment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Histology
  • Cell Biology


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