The human intestine harbours a complex community of microorganisms, known as the gut microbiota. Significant progress in microbiota research has not only provided knowledge into its compositions and abundance, but has also elucidated its crucial functions and potential applications to human health and disease. This review will summarize the key understandings of the gut microbiota to date, with particular emphases on gut microbiota development and the mechanisms for interactions with the host immune system and intestinal epithelium. Finally, it will explore the potential microbiota therapies currently being researched, and discuss some of the challenges of translating the evidence from basic science to human trials.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).