Extracellular Vesicles With Possible Roles in Gut Intestinal Tract Homeostasis and IBD. Chang, X. et al. Mediators of inflammation vol. 2020 1945832. 13 Jan. 2020.

The human gut hosts trillions of microbes about ten times the total number of cells in our body. Many of these microbes have a regulatory role on the maturation and function of some intestinal and immune cells. Consequently, some studies show that alterations in the gut microbial community are implicated in the pathogenesis and development of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). The communication between all these actors is key to maintaining intestinal homeostasis and recent evidence points to extracellular vesicles (EVs) as crucial elements of this process. EVs are particles released by many different cells which carry different compounds. They are involved in many processes such as immunomodulation, the permeability of the intestinal barrier and epithelial healing and therefore,  may have an important role as biomarkers for diagnostics and as pharmaceutical vehicles for treating IBD.

This review discusses the content and origin of EVs and their role in the pathogenesis and progression of IBD. In addition, the authors assess the clinical potential of EVs as diagnostic biomarkers and their potential therapeutic effects in IBD. 

The Effectiveness of Probiotics in the Treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)—A Critical Review. Jakubczyk D, Leszczyńska K and Górska S.  Nutrients. 2020; 12(7):1973.

Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) affects millions of people worldwide. However, its direct causes are not fully known. Current evidence suggests that the onset and progress of IBD is the result of the combination of many different factors including genetic agents, environmental elements such as diet and lifestyle, host immune responses and the microorganisms living within the gut. As the gut microbial community has an important role in inflammation, probiotics may be a promising therapeutic approach for IBD, as they hinder the growth of potentially harmful bacteria, and also have desired immunomodulatory effects. 

In this review, authors describe the different factors involved in the etiology of IBD and discuss the immunomodulatory properties of probiotics among different study models including cell lines, animal models and clinical studies with patients. Probiotic usefulness is assessed in relation to the treatment, prevention and remission of the disease. The review concludes that further research is needed to obtain more data and to estimate the appropriate probiotic-based therapy for different patients.