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Blowing Hot and Cold: Body Temperature and the Microbiome.

Authors
  • Huus, Kelsey E1, 2
  • Ley, Ruth E1, 2
  • 1 Department of Microbiome Science, Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biologygrid.419495.4, Tübingen, Germany. , (Germany)
  • 2 Cluster of Excellence - Controlling Microbes to Fight Infections, University of Tübingen, Tübingen, Germany. , (Germany)
Type
Published Article
Journal
mSystems
Publication Date
Oct 26, 2021
Volume
6
Issue
5
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1128/mSystems.00707-21
PMID: 34581596
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

The intestinal microbiome influences host health, and its responsiveness to diet and disease is increasingly well studied. However, our understanding of the factors driving microbiome variation remain limited. Temperature is a core factor that controls microbial growth, but its impact on the microbiome remains to be fully explored. Although commonly assumed to be a constant 37°C, normal body temperatures vary across the animal kingdom, while individual body temperature is affected by multiple factors, including circadian rhythm, age, environmental temperature stress, and immune activation. Changes in body temperature via hypo- and hyperthermia have been shown to influence the gut microbiota in a variety of animals, with consistent effects on community diversity and stability. It is known that temperature directly modulates the growth and virulence of gastrointestinal pathogens; however, the effect of temperature on gut commensals is not well studied. Further, body temperature can influence other host factors, such as appetite and immunity, with indirect effects on the microbiome. In this minireview, we discuss the evidence linking body temperature and the intestinal microbiome and their implications for microbiome function during hypothermia, heat stress, and fever.

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