Intestinal homoeostasis is a complex affair. We are just beginning to appreciate the molecular nature of the crosstalk that allows happy coexistence between the commensal resident microbiota and the gastrointestinal (GI) mucosal immune system. Both microbial and host components involved in this interplay are being increasingly identified and studied. A better understanding of these multifaceted interactions holds the key for unlocking the cellular events responsible for gut inflammatory conditions such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.

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