Etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections and the emerging role of bitter taste receptors: A scoping review
Abstract: Reproductive tract infections pose an immense public health concern worldwide as over 600 million new cases are recorded annually along with several complications, including infertility, ectopic pregnancy, preterm delivery, and neonatal death. Despite improved understanding of the mechanisms of pathogenic invasion, the etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections is yet to be completely understood. Recent data has suggested a critical role of bitter taste receptors of the reproductive tract in etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections. Here, we review the literature on current etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections and the role of bitter taste receptors of the reproductive tract in etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections. Emerging evidence suggests a critical role of microbiota disorder of the reproductive tract in reproductive tract infections. Several bacterial, protozoan parasitic, helminthic parasitic and viral pathogens have been identified as causative agents of reproductive tract infections. These pathogens subvert host defenses and activate specific architectural units of the uroepithelium such as Toll-like receptors, which recognize conserved motifs on the pathogens. The activated Toll-like receptors mediate downstream signaling, stimulating nuclear factor-κB, which in turn activates the production of proinflammatory cytokines. This pathway is also associated with recruitment of immunocytes to the site of aggression and release of proteinases, which drive tissue damage in the reproductive tract. Defects in detection of pathogenic components by the bitter taste receptors of the reproductive tract may play a critical role in the etiopathogenesis of reproductive tract infections. This review provides important information for identification of novel frontiers for the treatment of reproductive tract infections.
Keywords: Infection / Genital inflammation / Reproduction / Reproductive tract infections / Bitter taste receptor / Etiopathogenesis / Cytokines
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