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Tags: gut health | probiotics | neurotransmitters | inflammation

Probiotics Help Produce Neurotransmitters

By Tuesday, 19 January 2021 04:16 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Keeping these gut microorganisms healthy throughout your life is critical because they play a major role in maintaining the proficiency of immune cells in the brain called microglia.

The intestines carry out their functions by a carefully coordinated series of mechanisms involving waves of contraction and relaxation of the intestine (called peristalsis), as well as secretion of a number of enzymes and chemical messengers that regulate digestion and other special operations of the intestines.

Many of these operations depend upon neurotransmitters within the walls of the intestines, which are filled with special nerves (together called the enteric nervous system).

Probiotic bacteria can produce an assortment of these neurotransmitters. For example, the Escherichia, Bacillus, and Saccharomyces species of bacteria produce norepinephrine; Candida, Streptococcus, Escherichia, and Enterococcus produce 5-hydroxytryptamine (also called serotonin); Bascillus can produce dopamine; and Lactobacillus can produce acetylcholine. While most of this activity is localized within the gut wall, these neurotransmitters can also enter the bloodstream and the nervous system.

These colon bacteria also play an essential role in the development of the brain. During adolescence, we see an increase in psychiatric problems such as schizophrenia, substance abuse, and mood disorders, which may be (at least in part) due to changes in the gut microbotia.

This occurs because inflammatory cells (monocytes) are driven toward the brain by the cytokine TNFalpha, which then activates microglia within the brain. Special probiotics can prevent this.

During adulthood, the mix of beneficial probiotics in the colon stabilizes and becomes more resistant to antibiotic damage. But as we pass into older age, this stability and resistance declines, increasing the activation of brain microglia and hence chronic brain inflammation.

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Keeping these gut microorganisms healthy throughout your life is critical because they play a major role in maintaining the proficiency of immune cells in the brain called microglia.
gut health, probiotics, neurotransmitters, inflammation
Tuesday, 19 January 2021 04:16 PM
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