Welcome to the Kriegel Lab
The Microbiota in Immune-Mediated Diseases
The gut microbiota, the collection of trillions of commensals colonizing the gastrointestinal tract, does not elicit a pathologic immune response in healthy hosts even though immune cells are constantly in contact with microbial antigens at the mucosal surfaces. This phenomenon is partly due to the fact that the human microbiota and immune system have co-evolved for millennia with the host. Diet and environmental influences that have shaped these processes in the past are very different in today's societies. Recent changes in the gut microbial community composition are thought to contribute to metabolic and immune-mediated diseases.
An emerging theme in autoimmunity research is that outgrowth of detrimental commensals ("pathobionts") or loss of beneficial commensals ("symbionts") unleashes the autoimmune process in a genetically susceptible host by various mechanisms. While evidence exists for this paradigm in some mouse models, the proof in human autoimmune diseases is still outstanding.
Major aims of this laboratory are to define the microbial community composition of gastrointestinal, cutaneous and oral microbiomes in autoimmune diseases, to study host-microbiota interactions in vitro and vivo, and to potentially prove causal relationships using humanized gnotobiotic animals. The ultimate goal is to develop novel biomarkers and therapeutic strategies for human autoimmune diseases.
Featured Publications from the Kriegel Lab
The study “Translocation of a gut pathobiont drives autoimmunity in mice and humans” by Manfredo Vieira et al. published on March 9, 2018, in Science can be accessed without a paywall via our website using the following links:
A 3-minute video summarizing this work can be found published here on YouTube.
Our study in collaboration with the Wolin laboratory entitled “Commensal orthologs of the human autoantigen Ro60 as triggers of autoimmunity in lupus” by Greiling et al. published on March 28, 2018, in Science Translational Medicineis accessible by clicking here to visit the Science Magzine website.
A 2-minute video summarizing this work can be found published here on YouTube.