Research Topic

Nutritional Aspects of Immunity and Immunometabolism in Health and Disease

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It is increasingly becoming apparent that immune cell number and function are altered in response to changes in nutritional status. For example, undernutrition impairs immune cell survival, proliferation, and function, leading to poor response to infection or vaccination. Conversely, obesity leads to the ...

It is increasingly becoming apparent that immune cell number and function are altered in response to changes in nutritional status. For example, undernutrition impairs immune cell survival, proliferation, and function, leading to poor response to infection or vaccination. Conversely, obesity leads to the establishment of a low-grade chronic inflammatory state with an increase in pro-inflammatory cells and circulating pro-inflammatory cytokines, resulting in altered cellular immunity, increased rates of certain forms of autoimmunity, as well as impaired response to infections such as influenza virus, Helicobacter pylori, and Neisseria meningitides.

An alteration in the nutritional status of an organism can affect its immune system in a variety of ways. One of the key determinants for this is by altering the systemic metabolic state, which can then influence immune cell metabolism. Thus, understanding the link between systemic metabolism and immune cell metabolism is important as the changes in immune cell metabolism can directly lead to an altered immune response. There is also an emerging interest in understanding the role of the microbiome (both bacterial and viral) in the context of immune cell response to changes in nutrition. Indeed, it is now clear that dysbiosis can influence both systemic metabolism and immunity, and vice versa.

This Research Topic will provide a comprehensive overview of the impact of nutritional status on immune cell response in both health and disease. We welcome the submission of Reviews, Mini-Reviews and Original Research articles covering, but not limited to, the following topics:

1. The effects of nutrition on immune responses to infection
2. The effects of nutrition on the activity and functions of different immune cell subsets
3. Long-term effects of under- or over-nutrition on immunological memory
4. Mechanisms of obesity-associated inflammation, including changes in immune cell populations and response to infection
5. The effects of nutrition on immune cell autophagy and metabolism
6. Effects of vitamin deficiencies on infection or vaccine response
7. Link between nutritional effects on microbiome and host immune cell response in adults


Keywords: Undernutrition, Over-nutrition, Obesity, Immunity, Immune cells, Metabolism, Infection, Vaccination, Microbiome


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