Scientists have determined that fungus may play a key role in chronic intestinal inflammation disorders. They found that patients with Crohn’s disease tend to have much higher levels of the fungus Candida tropicaliscompared to their healthy family members. A new review published in Digestive and Liver Disease looks at these findings and provides insights into potential new therapeutic approaches using antifungals and probiotics in the treatment of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) such as Crohn’s disease (CD).
“The human gastrointestinal (GI) tract is home to trillions of microorganisms, some beneficial and others potentially harmful. Recent advances in science have allowed us to identify the multitude of organisms inhabiting the GI tract and parse out those that play a role in IBD,” explained lead author Mahmoud A. Ghannoum, PhD, of the Center for Medical Mycology, Department of Dermatology, Case Western Reserve University and, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, Cleveland, OH. “Unfortunately, most research has focused on studying only the bacteria while overlooking a key player, fungus. In order to address this issue, we have focused our efforts on studying the fungal community in the GI tract known as the mycobiome.”