Jun 19, 2018
Although the lung was considered a sterile organ, it has been proven that from the first days of life there are “healthy” bacterial communities that play an important role in the physiological balance and maintenance of the individual’s health. (1)
The respiratory microbiome harbors all the microorganisms present in a niche as well as its interaction with local epithelial and immune cells. However, this niche is evolving day after day thanks to exposure to other environments and microorganisms, which encourages its specialization and maturation. Studies have shown that the respiratory microbiome provides protection and resistance against pathogens invading the lungs. (2, 3, 4).
According the anatomical structure of the respiratory tract, different populations can be founded; the table below shows the microorganisms present in the respiratory tract. (4)
In turn, when there is a respiratory disease, the host microbial composition varies depending on the pathogen. In the case of COPD, if the bacterial activity is known and also the alterations engendered due to external microbes, it will be possible to understand the reaction mechanism that comprises lung immunity and inflammation, and in this way be able to prevent exacerbations and avoid complications. (5)
- Dickson RP, Erb-Downward JR, Martinez FJ, Huffnagle GB. The microbiome and the respiratory tract. Annual Review of Physiology. 2016; Vol. 78:481-504.
- Gao Z., Kang Y. , Yu J., Ren L. Human Pharyngeal Microbiome May Play A Protective Role in Respiratory Tract Infections. Genomics Proteomics Bioinformatics 12 (2014) 144–150.
- Lanaspa M., Bassat Q., Medeiros M., Muñoz-Almagro C. Respiratory microbiota and lower respiratory tract disease. Expert Review of Anti-infective Therapy. 2017; Vol. 15 Is 7; 703-711.
- Man WH., Steenhuijsen Piters WA.Bogaert D. The microbiota of the respiratory tract. Nat Rev Microbiol. 2017; Vol. 15:259 .
- Shukla SD., Budden KF., Neal R., Hansbro PH. Microbiome effects on immunity, health and disease in the lung. Clinical & Translational Immunology (2017) 6, e133.