Special Issue "Recent Advances in Intestinal Barrier Function and the Gut-Brain Axis in Ageing"

A special issue of Gastroenterology Insights (ISSN 2036-7422). This special issue belongs to the section "Gastrointestinal Disease".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 February 2022.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. John-Peter Ganda Mall
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Department of Biomedical and Clinical Sciences, Linköping University, 58183 Linköping, Sweden
2. Laboratory of Translational Mucosal Immunology, Digestive Diseases Research Unit, Vall d'Hebron Institut de Recerca, Hospital Universitari Vall d'Hebron, 08035 Barcelona, Spain
Interests: intestinal barrier; mucosal immunology; plasma cells; ageing
Dr. Ulrikke Voss
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, 22184 Lund, Sweden
2. Department of Molecular Medicine, University of Oslo, 0372 Oslo, Norway
Interests: neurogastroenterologi; neuroenergetics; nutrition; inflammation; women’s health; volatile organic compounds

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

By 2050, it is estimated that 22% of the world’s population will be above 60. Ensuring healthy ageing is therefore a global priority. The elderly population is commonly affected by idiopathic bowel symptoms, and the underlying mechanisms seem not only restricted to the gut but also connected in the circuit known as the gut–brain axis. Neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease are highly prevalent in the elderly, with emerging evidence suggesting a disturbance in the gut–brain axis playing an important role. The intestinal barrier is vital for maintaining immune homeostasis by preventing pathology-inducing translocation of microorganisms and toxins into the body, while also allowing selective absorption of nutrients. The role of the intestinal barrier function needs to be further studied in relation to its effect on disease initiation and symptom manifestation/exacerbation, particularly in the ageing population.

For this Special Issue, we welcome a broad range of pre-clinical to clinical contributions that cover the intestinal barrier function in the ageing population with an emphasis on inflammaging, mucosal immunology, gut–brain axis, microbiota, gastrointestinal disorders and neurodegenerative diseases from the perspective of the gut. We aim to publish high-quality research that brings new knowledge to this broad field.

Dr. John-Peter Ganda Mall
Dr. Ulrikke Voss
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Gastroenterology Insights is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • intestinal barrier function
  • permeability
  • ageing
  • inflammaging
  • gut–brain axis
  • mucosal immunology
  • neurodegenerative diseases
  • microbiota

Published Papers (1 paper)

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The Association of Irritable Bowel Complaints and Perceived Immune Fitness among Individuals That Report Impaired Wound Healing: Supportive Evidence for the Gut–Brain–Skin Axis
Gastroenterol. Insights 2021, 12(4), 423-432; https://doi.org/10.3390/gastroent12040040 - 03 Nov 2021
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The gut–brain–skin axis is important in wound healing. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between experiencing irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms, perceived immune fitness, and impaired wound healing. N = 1942 Dutch students (mean (SD) age 21.3 (2.1), 83.6% [...] Read more.
The gut–brain–skin axis is important in wound healing. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between experiencing irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) symptoms, perceived immune fitness, and impaired wound healing. N = 1942 Dutch students (mean (SD) age 21.3 (2.1), 83.6% women) completed an online survey. They were allocated to one of four groups: (1) control group (N = 1544), (2) wound infection (WI) group (N = 65), (3) slow healing wounds (SHW) group (N = 236), or (4) a combination group (COMBI), which experienced both WI and SHW (N = 87). Participants rated their perceived immune fitness on a scale ranging from very poor (0) to excellent (10), and the severity of IBS symptoms (constipation, diarrhea, and pain) was assessed with the Birmingham IBS Symptom Questionnaire. Compared to the control group, perceived immune fitness was significantly poorer for the SHW group (p < 0.001) and COMBI group (p < 0.001), but not for the WI group. Compared to the control group, constipation was reported significantly more frequently by the SHW group (p < 0.001) and the WI group (p = 0.012), diarrhea was reported significantly more frequent by the SHW group (p = 0.038) and the COMBI group (p = 0.004), and pain was reported significantly more frequent by the SHW group (p = 0.020) and COMBI group (p = 0.001). Correlations between IBS complaints and perceived immune fitness were statistically significant (p < 0.001), and also a highly significant and negative association was found between the percentage of participants that reported impaired wound healing and perceived immune fitness (r = −0.97, p < 0.001). In conclusion, among participants with self-reported impaired wound healing, IBS complaints were significantly more severe, and accompanied by a significantly reduced perceived immune fitness. Full article
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