The human enteric microbiome is highly complex and has more than 150 times more genes within it than its host. The host and the microbiome have a commensurate relationship that can evolve over time. The typically symbiotic relationship between the two can become pathogenic. The microbiome composition in adults reflects their history of exposure to bacteria and environmental factors during early life, their genetic background, age, interactions with the immune system, geographical location, and, most especially, their diet. Similarly, these factors are thought to contribute to the development of autoimmune disease. It is possible that alterations in the intestinal microbiome could lead to liver disease. There is emerging data for the contribution of the microbiome in development of primary sclerosing cholangitis, primary biliary cholangitis, and autoimmune hepatitis; liver disorders associated with aberrant immune function in genetically susceptible individuals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-346
Number of pages13
JournalAIMS Microbiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2018


  • Autoimmune hepatitis
  • Microbiome
  • PBC
  • PSC
  • Primary biliary cholangitis
  • Primary sclerosing cholangitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Autoimmune liver disease and the enteric microbiome'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this