Scientists find ‘knowing it in your gut’ is real

Scientists find ‘knowing it in your gut’ is real

Bacteria in the stomach influences the brain and the brain influences metabolic disorders.

A new study has discovered that the ‘cross-talk’ between bacteria in our gut and our brain plays an important role in the development of psychiatric illness,intestinal diseases and probably other health problems including obesity.

The research was conducted by researchers at McMaster University.

“The wave of the future is full of opportunity as we think about how microbiota or bacteria influence the brain and how the bi-directional communication of the body and the brain influence metabolic disorders,such as obesity and diabetes,” said researcher Jane Foster.

Using germ-free mice,Foster’s research shows gut bacteria influences how the brain is wired for learning and memory.

The study’s results show that genes linked to learning and memory are altered in germ-free mice and,in particular,they are altered in one of the key brain regions for learning and memory – the hippocampus.


“The take-home message is that gut bacteria influences anxiety-like behavior through alterations in the way the brain is wired,” said Foster.

“We have a hypothesis in my lab that the state of your immune system and your gut bacteria – which are in constant communication – influences your personality,” she said.

The study has been published in the March issue of the science journal ‘Neurogastroenterology and Motility’.