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Immunosuppressive therapy after solid organ transplantation and the gut microbiota: Bidirectional interactions with clinical consequences
American Journal of Transplantation  (IF8.086),  Pub Date : 2021-09-12, DOI: 10.1111/ajt.16836
Paul Gabarre, Christopher Loens, Yanis Tamzali, Benoit Barrou, Frédéric Jaisser, Jérôme Tourret

Our understanding of the involvement of the gut microbiota (GM) in human health has expanded exponentially over the last few decades, particularly in the fields of metabolism, inflammation, and immunology. Immunosuppressive treatment (IST) prescribed to solid organ transplant (SOT) recipients produces GM changes that affect these different processes. This review aims at describing the current knowledge of how IST changes the GM. Overall, SOT followed by IST results in persistent changes in the GM, with a consistent increase in proteobacteria including opportunistic pathobionts. In mice, Tacrolimus induces dysbiosis and metabolic disorders, and alters the intestinal barrier. The transfer of the GM from Tacrolimus-treated hosts confers immunosuppressive properties, suggesting a contributory role for the GM in this drug's efficacy. Steroids induce dysbiosis and intestinal barrier alterations, and also seem to depend partly on the GM for their immunosuppressive and metabolic effects. Mycophenolate Mofetil, frequently responsible for digestive side effects such as diarrhea and colitis, is associated with pro-inflammatory dysbiosis and increased endotoxemia. Alemtuzumab, m-TOR inhibitors, and belatacept have shown more marginal impact on the GM. Most of these observations are descriptive. Future studies should explore the underlying mechanism of IST-induced dysbiosis in order to better understand their efficacy and safety characteristics.