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Papers of the Week

Papers: 26 Aug 2023 - 1 Sep 2023


Molecular/Cellular, Neurobiology

Abdominal/Pelvic Pain, Inflammation/Inflammatory

2023 Aug 15





Microbiota in Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Endometriosis: Birds of a Feather Flock Together-A Review.


Salmeri N, Sinagra E, Dolci C, Buzzaccarini G, Sozzi G, Sutera M, Candiani M, Ungaro F, Massimino L, Danese S, Mandarino FV


Endometriosis and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are chronic conditions affecting up to 10% of the global population, imposing significant burdens on healthcare systems and patient quality of life. Interestingly, around 20% of endometriosis patients also present with symptoms indicative of IBS. The pathogenesis of both these multifactorial conditions remains to be fully elucidated, but connections to gut microbiota are becoming more apparent. Emerging research underscores significant differences in the gut microbiota composition between healthy individuals and those suffering from either endometriosis or IBS. Intestinal dysbiosis appears pivotal in both conditions, exerting an influence via similar mechanisms. It impacts intestinal permeability, triggers inflammatory reactions, and initiates immune responses. Furthermore, it is entwined in a bidirectional relationship with the brain, as part of the gut-brain axis, whereby dysbiosis influences and is influenced by mental health and pain perception. Recent years have witnessed the development of microbiota-focused therapies, such as low FODMAP diets, prebiotics, probiotics, antibiotics, and fecal microbiota transplantation, designed to tackle dysbiosis and relieve symptoms. While promising, these treatments present inconsistent data, highlighting the need for further research. This review explores the evidence of gut dysbiosis in IBS and endometriosis, underscoring the similar role of microbiota in both conditions. A deeper understanding of this common mechanism may enable enhanced diagnostics and therapeutic advancements.