The millions of bacteria that live on skin can boost immunity and protect the body from infections,a new research has claimed.
Researchers from National Institutes of Health in US found
that millions of naturally occurring commensal bacteria in the
skin collectively known as the skin microbiota contribute to
protective immunity by interacting with the immune cells in
The study was published in journal Science. The investigators colonised germ-free mice (mice bred with
no naturally occurring microbes in the gut or skin) with the
human skin commensal Staphylococcus epidermidis.
The team observed that colonising the mice with this one
species of good bacteria enabled an immune cell in the mouse skin to produce a cell-signaling molecule needed to protect against harmful microbes.
The researchers subsequently infected both colonised and
non-colonised germ-free mice with a parasite. Mice that were
not colonised with the bacteria did not mount an effective
immune response to the parasite,mice that were colonised did.
The study demonstrated that skin health relies on the
interaction of commensals and immune cells,the researchers
said in a statement.
The study was led by investigators in the laboratories of
Yasmine Belkaid at the National Institute of Allergy and
Infectious Diseases,in collaboration with Julie Segre at the
National Human Genome Research Institute,and Giorgio
Trinchieri,and Heidi Kong at the National Cancer Institute.