Microbe-Immune Crosstalk: Evidence That T Cells Influence the Development of the Brain Metabolome

Giorgia Caspani, Miranda Green, Jonathan R. Swann, Jane A. Foster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Cross-talk between the immune system and the brain is essential to neuronal development, neuronal excitability, neuroplasticity, and neurotransmission. Gut microbiota are essential to immune system development and immune function; hence, it is essential to consider more broadly the microbiota-immune-brain axis in neurodevelopment. The gut, brain, and microbial metabolomes obtained from C57Bl/6 and T-cell-deficient mice across four developmental timepoints (postnatal day 17, 24, 28, and 84) were studied by1H NMR spectroscopy. 16S rRNA gene sequencing was performed on cecal and fecal samples. In the absence of T-cells, the developmental trajectory of the gut microbiota and of the host’s metabolic profile was altered. The novel insights from this work include (1) the requirement of functional T-cells for the normal trajectory of microbiotal development and the metabolic maturation of the supra-organism, (2) the potential role for Muribaculaceae taxa in modulating the cecal availability of metabolites previously implicated with a role in the gut-brain axis in T-cell deficient mice, and (3) the impact of T-cell-deficiency on central levels of neuroactive metabolites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3259
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • 5-aminovalerate
  • Brain
  • Butyrate
  • Glucose-6-phosphate
  • Immunocompromised
  • Metabolome
  • Microbiota
  • Muribaculaceae
  • T cells
  • Valerate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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