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Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:25 AM

 

Neuroscience of the Gut: the brain is shaped by bacteria in the digestive tract

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=the-neuroscience-of-gut

People may advise you to listen to your gut instincts: now research suggests that your gut may have more impact on your thoughts than you ever realized. Scientists from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the Genome Institute of Singapore led by Sven Pettersson recently reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that normal gut flora, the bacteria that inhabit our intestines, have a significant impact on brain development and subsequent adult behavior.

We human beings may think of ourselves as a highly evolved species of conscious individuals, but we are all far less human than most of us appreciate. Scientists have long recognized that the bacterial cells inhabiting our skin and gut outnumber human cells by ten-to-one. Indeed, Princeton University scientist Bonnie Bassler compared the approximately 30,000 human genes found in the average human to the more than 3 million bacterial genes inhabiting us, concluding that we are at most one percent human. We are only beginning to understand the sort of impact our bacterial passengers have on our daily lives.

Moreover, these bacteria have been implicated in the development of neurological and behavioral disorders. For example, gut bacteria may have an influence on the body’s use of vitamin B6, which in turn has profound effects on the health of nerve and muscle cells. They modulate immune tolerance and, because of this, they may have an influence on autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis. They have been shown to influence anxiety-related behavior, although there is controversy regarding whether gut bacteria exacerbate or ameliorate stress related anxiety responses. In autism and other pervasive developmental disorders, there are reports that the specific bacterial species present in the gut are altered and that gastrointestinal problems exacerbate behavioral symptoms. A newly developed biochemical test for autism is based, in part, upon the end products of bacterial metabolism.

But this new study is the first to extensively evaluate the influence of gut bacteria on the biochemistry and development of the brain. The scientists raised mice lacking normal gut microflora, then compared their behavior, brain chemistry and brain development to mice having normal gut bacteria. The microbe-free animals were more active and, in specific behavioral tests, were less anxious than microbe-colonized mice. In one test of anxiety, animals were given the choice of staying in the relative safety of a dark box, or of venturing into a lighted box. Bacteria-free animals spent significantly more time in the light box than their bacterially colonized littermates. Similarly, in another test of anxiety, animals were given the choice of venturing out on an elevated and unprotected bar to explore their environment, or remain in the relative safety of a similar bar protected by enclosing walls. Once again, the microbe-free animals proved themselves bolder than their colonized kin.

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
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Arrow 13 replies Author Time Post
Reply Neuroscience of the Gut: the brain is shaped by bacteria in the digestive tract (Original post)
dkf Dec 2012 OP
liberal N proud Dec 2012 #1
no_hypocrisy Dec 2012 #2
dkf Dec 2012 #4
postulater Dec 2012 #7
Coyotl Dec 2012 #3
shireen Dec 2012 #8
randome Dec 2012 #9
Coyotl Dec 2012 #13
ananda Dec 2012 #5
blue sky at night Dec 2012 #6
dkf Dec 2012 #10
BainsBane Dec 2012 #11
Quantess Dec 2012 #12

Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:31 AM

1. Mark to read later

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:33 AM

2. Herein lies the extended problem.

Due to automated slaughter processing, beef is contaminated by the contents of the cattle's intestines. And that bacteria is further burrowed into the flesh by more processing. The contaminated bacteria cannot be eradicated except by cooking the meat somewhere between well down and incineration. When ingested, the bacteria kills the good gut bacteria referenced in the article in the OP and encourages the growth of e coli bacteria in the gut.

Can you imagine that by eating beef as it is right now that you are injuring not only your digestive system but also your neurological health?

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Response to no_hypocrisy (Reply #2)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:49 AM

4. Also possibly implicated...antibiotics and glyphosphate in Monsanto's Roundup.

 

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Response to dkf (Reply #4)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 10:21 AM

7. For later, thanks.

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:39 AM

3. This is clearly understood by Native people in the Amazon.

I was treated by Natives for a gut disorder. They altered my flora overnight with a plant root. One of their practices is called the purge, a method of cleansing the gut of microbes when you are not felling proper. By-products of micro-organism have bioactivity, including psychoactivity.

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Response to Coyotl (Reply #3)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 11:12 AM

8. interesting to know

Do you have any further information like articles and websites? I'd like to look into it further. Thanks!

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Response to Coyotl (Reply #3)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 11:21 AM

9. I doubt they truly understood it.

They happened upon a method that worked. Still, yours is an interesting anecdote.

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Response to randome (Reply #9)

Sun Dec 23, 2012, 12:32 AM

13. From your perspective, you know what a remote people don't understand. WOW!

Can all your people do that?

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 08:54 AM

5. Very interesting and informative thread.

Thank you.

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 09:07 AM

6. Hey THANKS for bringing up a vital topic...

the more research I do the more I become aware that a healthy gut is the most important goal we should have to heal what is wrong with us. Never mind health care we all need to is to grab hold of our own health and take charge of what we eat! For more reading check out the Body Ecology Website and listen to Donna on Hayhouse Radio via the internet.


Here are some links if you want to start healing yourself:


http://www.hayhouseradio.com/show_details.php?show_id=302&episode_type=0


http://bodyecology.com/aboutbed.php


Just a couple of ideas:

Gluten is the worst thing for us...even if you are not intolerant the immune system is activated by it, wheat is poison not food.

Sugar feeds all of the wrong things in the gut, especially yeast infection, it is poison not food.


If you wonder why so many people are overweight and miserable start doing some research.




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Response to blue sky at night (Reply #6)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:48 PM

10. So much to learn!

 

Thank you for your links. I wonder why this is so far under the radar.

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 01:51 PM

11. Tied to obesity

I recently read an article saying that some scientists have found a link between certain bacteria and obesity. It was somewhere on DU in the last ten days.

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Response to dkf (Original post)

Sat Dec 22, 2012, 06:28 PM

12. Interesting!

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