RORγt + Treg to Th17 ratios correlate with susceptibility to Giardia infection
Abstract: Infections with Giardia are among the most common causes of food and water-borne diarrheal disease worldwide. Here, we investigated Th17, Treg and IgA responses, and alterations in gut microbiota in two mouse lines with varying susceptibility to Giardia muris infection. Infected BALB/c mice shed significantly more cysts compared with C57BL/6 mice. Impaired control of infection in BALB/c mice was associated with lower Th17 activity and lower IgA levels compared with C57BL/6 mice. The limited metabolic activity, proliferation and cytokine production of Th17 cells in BALB/c mice was associated with higher proportions of intestinal Foxp3+RORγt+ regulatory T cells and BALB/c mice developed increased RORγt+ Treg:Th17 ratios in response to G. muris infection. Furthermore, G. muris colonization led to a significantly reduced evenness in the gut microbial communities of BALB/c mice. Our data indicate that differential susceptibility to Giardia infections may be related to RORγt+ Treg controlling Th17 activity and that changes in the microbiota composition upon Giardia infection partially depend on the host background.
Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (Federal Ministry of Education and Research) (IP7/01KI1725D)