Respiratory and Gut Microbiota in Allergy and Asthma

Mirjana Turkalj, Marcel Lipej


The objective of the study was to assess the potential mechanisms by which the microbiome influences immune responses in allergy and asthma, especially during early childhood and to evaluate the evidence of respiratory and gut microbiota dysbiosis. The development and progression of allergy and asthma may depend on individual susceptibility, allergen exposure, infections, and exposure to indoor and outdoor air pollution. In recent years there has increasingly been an emphasis on the importance of microbiota in the regulation of immune response and the development of atopic diseases, as well as asthma. Commensal microbes are necessary for the induction of a balanced and tolerogenic immune system especially at an early age. An insufficiency of early life exposure to the environmental microbiota necessary for colonization of the gastrointestinal and/or respiratory tracts results in the development of asthma and allergic diseases. On the other hand, disturbed physiological flora in the digestive and respiratory tract also increase the risk for development and progression of asthma and allergy (allergic march). Microbiota in the gut and lungs may influence both the onset and progression of childhood asthma. These microbiota can be modulated by various environmental factors, including the type of delivery, early-life microbial exposures, diet, antibiotics.

Conclusion – Intervention regarding airway microbiome, particularly in early life, might be a strategy  for prevention or treatment of asthma and allergies. Further investigations are needed to improve our understanding of the role of the microbiome in inflammation, and to clarify the effect of the regulation of lung and gut microbiota and its influence on the prevention or treatment of allergic diseases and asthma.


Asthma; Childhood; Microbiome; Gut Microbiota; Lung Microbiota

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