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Viscera affectum anno: the gut beyond eating behaviours

One of the most pleasurable, yet dangerous, activities of our daily life is eating. But once food has been swallowed, all we can do is to trust our gut. Several remarkable studies published in 2020 have expanded our knowledge on how the gut is intertwined with essential behaviours beyond food.

Key advances

  • Bacteria can use neurobiomimicry to coerce worms to eat more of those same bacteria1.

  • The development of sugar preferences in mice depends on brain stem neurons receiving vagal inputs from the gut6.

  • Death by lack of sleep in fruit flies and mice is due to cumulative oxidative stress in the gut9.

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Fig. 1: A gut sense for subliminal choices.


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Funding provided by DP2 MH122402, R21 AT010818, and Duke NUS Pilot Research Grant to D.V.B.

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Correspondence to Diego V. Bohórquez.

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The author declares no competing interests.

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Bohórquez, D.V. Viscera affectum anno: the gut beyond eating behaviours. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 18, 93–94 (2021).

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