Study raises hopes for development of new treatment for chronic liver disease

In a collaborative study with Keio University and other institutions, Professor Masahira Hattori at the Faculty of Science and Engineering discovered three types of intestinal bacteria, which could activate Th17 cells found in livers, present at high rate in feces of patients with PSC. Among the three types of bacteria discovered, one of them is Klebsiella, which was successfully shown in the study to invoke extreme immune response in livers of laboratory mice by opening a hole in the epithelium of large intestine, breaking the intestinal barrier and migrating to the lymph nodes outside the intestinal barrier. In the same study, it was also found that by using antimicrobial that eliminate Klebsiella, Th17 immune response in livers of laboratory mice was reduced by about 30%. These findings could lead to the future development of new medicine and diagnostic drugs to treat PSC.

The results and findings of this study were published in Nature Microbiology on January 14, 2019.