Respiratory tissue-associated commensal bacteria offer therapeutic potential against pneumococcal colonization

Soner Yildiz, João P.Pereira Bonifacio Lopes, Matthieu Bergé, Victor González-Ruiz, Damian Baud, Joachim Kloehn, Inês Boal-Carvalho, Olivier P. Schaeren, Michael Schotsaert, Lucy J. Hathaway, Serge Rudaz, Patrick H. Viollier, Siegfried Hapfelmeier, Patrice Francois, Mirco Schmolke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Under eubiotic conditions commensal microbes are known to provide a competitive barrier against invading bacterial pathogens in the intestinal tract, on the skin or on the vaginal mucosa. Here, we evaluate the role of lung microbiota in Pneumococcus colonization of the lungs. In eubiosis, the lungs of mice were dominantly colonized by Lactobacillus murinus. Differential analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequencing or L. murinus-specific qPCR of DNA from total organ homogenates vs.broncho alveolar lavages implicated tight association of these bacteria with the host tissue. Pure L. murinus conditioned culture medium inhibited growth and reduced the extension of pneumococcal chains. Growth inhibition in vitro was likely dependent on L. murinus-produced lactic acid, since pH neutralization of the conditioned medium aborted the antibacterial effect. Finally, we demonstrate that L. murinus provides a barrier against pneumococcal colonization in a respiratory dysbiosis model after an influenza A virus infection, when added therapeutically.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere53581
Pages (from-to)1-25
Number of pages25
StatePublished - Dec 2020


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