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Gut microbiota

Intestinal bacteria influence brain activity in healthy humans

Emerging evidence indicates that the intestinal microbiota influence brain chemistry, development and behaviour in animals. Tillisch and colleagues now show that ingestion of selected probiotics changes brain connectivity and responses to emotional challenge in healthy humans, paving the way for therapeutic exploitation of the microbiome–brain axis for functional gastrointestinal and primary behavioural disorders.

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Figure 1: Intestinal bacteria influence brain activity in healthy humans.


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The authors are supported by grants from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and by a grant in aid from the Nestlé Research Center.

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Correspondence to Stephen M. Collins.

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The authors have received a grant for research support from the Nestlé Research Center, Nestlé, Switzerland.

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Collins, S., Bercik, P. Intestinal bacteria influence brain activity in healthy humans. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 10, 326–327 (2013).

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