The gut microbiota (GM) exerts a strong influence over the host immune system and dysbiosis of this microbial community can affect the clinical phenotype in chronic inflammatory conditions. To explore the role of the GM in lupus nephritis, we colonized NZM2410 mice with Segmented Filamentous Bacteria (SFB). Gut colonization with SFB was associated with worsening glomerulonephritis, glomerular and tubular immune complex deposition and interstitial inflammation compared to NZM2410 mice free of SFB. With SFB colonization mice experienced an increase in small intestinal lamina propria Th17 cells and group 3 innate lymphoid cells (ILC3s). However, although serum IL-17A expression was elevated in these mice, Th17 cells and ILC3s were not detected in the inflammatory infiltrate in the kidney. In contrast, serum and kidney tissue expression of the macrophage chemoattractants MCP-1 and CXCL1 were significantly elevated in SFB colonized mice. Furthermore, kidney infiltrating F4/80+CD206+M2-like macrophages were significantly increased in these mice. Evidence of increased gut permeability or “leakiness” was also detected in SFB colonized mice. Finally, the intestinal microbiome of SFB colonized mice at 15 and 30 weeks of age exhibited dysbiosis when compared to uncolonized mice at the same time points. Both microbial relative abundance as well as biodiversity of colonized mice was found to be altered. Collectively, SFB gut colonization in the NZM2410 mouse exacerbates kidney disease, promotes kidney M2-like macrophage infiltration and overall intestinal microbiota dysbiosis.
© 2022. The Author(s).