Biodiversity hypothesis states that modern lifestyle with reduced contact with natural biodiversity causes instability of the immune system, which increases the risk of low-grade long-term inflammation and immune-mediated diseases. In contrast, constant exposure to environmental microbes helps to train the immune system and supports the development of immune tolerance. However, mechanisms and requirements how this happens is not fully understood.
We explore of the influence of environmental microbes on our immune system and on immune cells. We try to identify mechanisms, pathways and requirements for the positive outcomes of environmental exposure and to determine the molecular components responsible for the effect. Simultaneously, we study how the immunological changes associated with microbial exposure could be monitored and try to identify biochemical markers applicable for quantifying immunological changes that lower the risk for immune mediated diseases.