Bacterial Peptidoglycan as a Driver of Chronic Brain Inflammation

Jon D. Laman, Bert A. ’t Hart, Christopher Power, Roman Dziarski

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Peptidoglycan (PGN) is a cell wall component of both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. Signature fragments of PGN are proinflammatory through engagement of pattern recognition receptors (PRR) on resident tissue cells and circulating leukocytes. Despite its abundance in the gut microbiota, there is limited recognition that PGN could contribute to chronic neuroinflammation. This review highlights current insights into the roles of PGN as a determinant of brain inflammation, notably in multiple sclerosis (MS) and its experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) models. Recent studies demonstrate PGN in blood of healthy adult humans. PGN amplifies autoimmune pathology via activation of innate immune cells. Novel uptake routes through (altered) gut mucosa by myeloid leukocyte subsets promote PGN transport to the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)670-682
Number of pages13
JournalTrends in Molecular Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • NOD
  • TLR
  • infection
  • microbiome
  • microglia
  • neurodegeneration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology

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