Evaluating the Effects of Live Biotherapeutics Products on the Gut Barrier Integrity

Therapeutic intervention of barrier integrity regulation is an emerging topic. Probiotic therapies are increasingly used in gastrointestinal disorders and inflammatory conditions to suppress inflammatory responses and reduce intestinal wall damage. Creative Biolabs has been dedicated to research in live biotherapeutics. We have established a well-established technology platform and our professional technical team has extensive experience in evaluating the potential therapeutic effects of probiotics.

Overview of Intestinal Epithelial Barrier

The intestinal epithelial barrier is a single-cell thick lining of the gut that contains different types of epithelial cells. Maintaining the intestinal epithelial barrier is an important function of intestinal epithelial cells (IECs). An imbalance in the structure of the intestinal barrier can trigger uncontrolled immune responses in the intestinal microenvironment or allow unrestricted microbial growth, resulting in various diseases. Impaired intestinal barrier integrity has been observed in both intestinal and systemic diseases.

Host-microbiota interactions affecting the epithelial barrier function.Fig.1 Host-microbiota interactions affecting the epithelial barrier function. (Hiippala, 2018)

Gut Microbiota's Health-promoting Effects on the Gut Epithelium

The protective effect of commensal bacteria on barrier function is achieved by preventing the colonization of pathogens, interacting directly with the host enterocytes, and metabolizing undigested carbohydrates to short-chain fatty Acids. Microbial-derived butyrate increases mitochondrial-dependent oxygen consumption in enterocytes, stabilizes the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) involved in barrier protection, and induces the expression of HIF-target genes that augment barrier function. A. muciniphila was shown to protect against atherosclerosis in a mouse model by attenuating metabolic endotoxemia-induced inflammation through the restoration of the gut barrier. F. prausnitzii cells and supernatant were shown to decrease intestinal permeability by affecting apical junction proteins and enhancing the barrier function in a murine model with chemical-induced colitis.

Creative Biolabs' TEER Techniques for In Vitro Gut Barrier Integrity Evaluation

Cell culture models based on immortalized intestinal cell lines (Caco-2 or HT-29) can be used to evaluate electrical resistance and intestinal flux parameters. This approach provides a powerful tool for drug screening and toxicity studies to measure the transport of novel compound libraries across the intestinal barrier.

Transendothelial/transendothelial electrical resistance (TEER) is a widely accepted quantitative technique for measuring the integrity of tight junction dynamics in endothelial and epithelial monolayer cell culture models. TEER is the measurement of electrical resistance across a cellular monolayer and is a very sensitive and reliable method to confirm the integrity and permeability of the monolayer. The advantage and wide application of the TEER method are that it is non-invasive and can be used to monitor living cells at different stages of their growth and differentiation. TEER values are simple and rapid indicators of cellular barrier integrity.

TEER measurement with chopstick electrodes.Fig.2 TEER measurement with chopstick electrodes. (Srinivasan, 2015)

Creative Biolabs is a leading live biotherapeutics research CRO company, our extensive technical services are a testament to our professional competence. Work with our expert scientists to specify superior customized solutions for your project. Please feel free to contact us for more about TEER techniques.


  1. Hiippala, K.; et al. The Potential of Gut Commensals in Reinforcing Intestinal Barrier Function and Alleviating Inflammation. Nutrients. 2018, 10.
  2. Srinivasan, B.; et al. TEER measurement techniques for in vitro barrier model systems. J Lab Autom. 2015, 20: 107-26.

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