Crohn’s disease (CD) is a debilitating disease where chronic inflammation leads to intestinal perforation that requires surgical removal in up to 50% of cases. Recent evidence suggests that changes in intestinal microbiome may be responsible for the initiation and progression of the disease. Bacterial metabolites have been shown to influence intestinal inflammation making them interesting candidates for the management of CD. This project will bring together two advanced technologies developed by Hannan (in-vitro IBD models) and CHAIN Biotechnology (engineering of bacteria to deliver bio-therapeutic products). During the project we will create an in-vitro model of CD using primary tissue biopsy from patients with CD. In collaboration with CHAIN Biotechnology we will then investigate how bacterial metabolites influence gene expression in CD and healthy intestinal epithelium and determine the feasibility of using engineered bacteria as a microbial vehicle for delivering bioactives to the gut to treat CD.
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