Microbiota Contribute to Obesity-related Increases in the Pulmonary Response to Ozone.Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 2019 12; 61(6):702-712.AJ
Obesity is a risk factor for asthma, especially nonatopic asthma, and attenuates the efficacy of standard asthma therapeutics. Obesity also augments pulmonary responses to ozone, a nonatopic asthma trigger. The purpose of this study was to determine whether obesity-related alterations in gut microbiota contribute to these augmented responses to ozone. Ozone-induced increases in airway responsiveness, a canonical feature of asthma, were greater in obese db/db mice than in lean wild-type control mice. Depletion of gut microbiota with a cocktail of antibiotics attenuated obesity-related increases in the response to ozone, indicating a role for microbiota. Moreover, ozone-induced airway hyperresponsiveness was greater in germ-free mice that had been reconstituted with colonic contents of db/db than in wild-type mice. In addition, compared with dietary supplementation with the nonfermentable fiber cellulose, dietary supplementation with the fermentable fiber pectin attenuated obesity-related increases in the pulmonary response to ozone, likely by reducing ozone-induced release of IL-17A. Our data indicate a role for microbiota in obesity-related increases in the response to an asthma trigger and suggest that microbiome-based therapies such as prebiotics may provide an alternative therapeutic strategy for obese patients with asthma.