The brain-gut axis in health and disease

Adv Exp Med Biol. 2014;817:135-53. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-0897-4_6.


The interaction between the brain and the gut has been recognized for many centuries. This bidirectional interaction occurs via neural, immunological and hormonal routes, and is important not only in normal gastrointestinal function but also plays a significant role in shaping higher cognitive function such as our feelings and our subconscious decision-making. Therefore, it remains unsurprising that perturbations in normal signalling have been associated with a multitude of disorders, including inflammatory and functional gastrointestinal disorders, and eating disorders.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autonomic Nervous System / physiology*
  • Brain / physiology*
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / physiopathology
  • Gastrointestinal Tract / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Inflammatory Bowel Diseases / physiopathology
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome / physiopathology
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*