Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
. 2013 Jan;70(1):55-69.
doi: 10.1007/s00018-012-1028-z. Epub 2012 May 27.

Voices From Within: Gut Microbes and the CNS


Voices From Within: Gut Microbes and the CNS

Paul Forsythe et al. Cell Mol Life Sci. .


Recent advances in research have greatly increased our understanding of the importance of the gut microbiota. Bacterial colonization of the intestine is critical to the normal development of many aspects of physiology such as the immune and endocrine systems. It is emerging that the influence of the gut microbiota also extends to modulation of host neural development. Furthermore, the overall balance in composition of the microbiota, together with the influence of pivotal species that induce specific responses, can modulate adult neural function, peripherally and centrally. Effects of commensal gut bacteria in adult animals include protection from the central effects of infection and inflammation as well as modulation of normal behavioral responses. There is now robust evidence that gut bacteria influence the enteric nervous system, an effect that may contribute to afferent signaling to the brain. The vagus nerve has also emerged as an important means of communicating signals from gut bacteria to the CNS. Further understanding of the mechanisms underlying microbiome-gut-brain communication will provide us with new insight into the symbiotic relationship between gut microbiota and their mammalian hosts and help us identify the potential for microbial-based therapeutic strategies to aid in the treatment of mood disorders.

Similar articles

  • On communication between gut microbes and the brain.
    Forsythe P, Kunze WA, Bienenstock J. Forsythe P, et al. Curr Opin Gastroenterol. 2012 Nov;28(6):557-62. doi: 10.1097/MOG.0b013e3283572ffa. Curr Opin Gastroenterol. 2012. PMID: 23010679 Review.
  • Vagal pathways for microbiome-brain-gut axis communication.
    Forsythe P, Bienenstock J, Kunze WA. Forsythe P, et al. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014;817:115-33. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-0897-4_5. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014. PMID: 24997031 Review.
  • The gut microbiota and its correlations with the central nervous system disorders.
    Catanzaro R, Anzalone M, Calabrese F, Milazzo M, Capuana M, Italia A, Occhipinti S, Marotta F. Catanzaro R, et al. Panminerva Med. 2015 Sep;57(3):127-43. Epub 2014 Nov 12. Panminerva Med. 2015. PMID: 25390799 Review.
  • The Microbiota-Gut-Brain Axis.
    Cryan JF, O'Riordan KJ, Cowan CSM, Sandhu KV, Bastiaanssen TFS, Boehme M, Codagnone MG, Cussotto S, Fulling C, Golubeva AV, Guzzetta KE, Jaggar M, Long-Smith CM, Lyte JM, Martin JA, Molinero-Perez A, Moloney G, Morelli E, Morillas E, O'Connor R, Cruz-Pereira JS, Peterson VL, Rea K, Ritz NL, Sherwin E, Spichak S, Teichman EM, van de Wouw M, Ventura-Silva AP, Wallace-Fitzsimons SE, Hyland N, Clarke G, Dinan TG. Cryan JF, et al. Physiol Rev. 2019 Oct 1;99(4):1877-2013. doi: 10.1152/physrev.00018.2018. Physiol Rev. 2019. PMID: 31460832
  • The impact of microbiota on brain and behavior: mechanisms & therapeutic potential.
    Borre YE, Moloney RD, Clarke G, Dinan TG, Cryan JF. Borre YE, et al. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014;817:373-403. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-0897-4_17. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014. PMID: 24997043 Review.
See all similar articles

Cited by 68 articles

See all "Cited by" articles


    1. Free Radic Biol Med. 2006 Sep 15;41(6):985-91 - PubMed
    1. Nat Med. 2007 Jan;13(1):35-7 - PubMed
    1. ScientificWorldJournal. 2006 Jan 17;6:1-11 - PubMed
    1. Adv Nutr. 2012 Jan;3(1):8-20 - PubMed
    1. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2007 Mar;190(4):541-53 - PubMed

LinkOut - more resources