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. 2018 May 8;12:294.
doi: 10.3389/fnins.2018.00294. eCollection 2018.

Mouse Strain Affects Behavioral and Neuroendocrine Stress Responses Following Administration of Probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus JB-1 or Traditional Antidepressant Fluoxetine

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Free PMC article

Mouse Strain Affects Behavioral and Neuroendocrine Stress Responses Following Administration of Probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus JB-1 or Traditional Antidepressant Fluoxetine

Karen-Anne McVey Neufeld et al. Front Neurosci. .
Free PMC article

Abstract

Currently, there is keen interest in the development of alternative therapies in the treatment of depression. Given the explosion of research focused on the microbiota-gut-brain axis, consideration has turned to the potential of certain probiotics to improve patient outcomes for those suffering from mood disorders. Here we examine the abilities of a known antidepressant, fluoxetine, and the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus JB-1™, to attenuate responses to two established criteria for depressive-like behavior in animal models, the tail suspension test (TST) and the corticosterone response to an acute restraint stressor. We examine two different strains of mice known to differ in the extent to which they express both anxiety-like behavior and measures of despair-BALB/c and Swiss Webster-with respectively high and normal behavioral phenotypes for each. While adult male BALB/c mice responded with increased antidepressive-like behavior to both fluoxetine and L. rhamnosus JB-1 in both the TST and the corticosterone stress response, SW mice did not respond to either treatment as compared to controls. These findings highlight the importance of investigating putative antidepressants in mouse strains known to express face validity for some markers of depression. Clinical studies examining the activity of L. rhamnosus JB-1 in patients suffering from mood disorders are warranted, as well as further pre-clinical work examining how interactions between host genotype and intestinal microbial alterations may impact behavioral responses. This study adds to the literature supporting the possibility that modifying the intestinal microbiota via probiotics represents a promising potential therapeutic breakthrough in the treatment of psychiatric disease.

Keywords: antidepressant; microbiota-gut-brain axis; mouse strain; probiotic; stress reactivity.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Feeding fluoxetine or JB-1 to BALB/c mice reduces depressive-like behavior. Twenty-eight-day treatment of Lactobacillus rhamnosus JB-1 supplied via the drinking water reduced depressive-like behavior in BALB/c mice, but not Swiss Webster mice, as measured by % total time immobile in the tail suspension test. One-way ANOVA with corrected post-hoc p = 0.0396, n = 11–22/grp. Fourteen day treatment with fluoxetine via the drinking water reduced depressive-like behavior in BALB/c, but not Swiss Webster mice, as measured by % total time immobile. One-way ANOVA with corrected post-hoc p = 0.0158, n = 11–22/grp.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Feeding fluoxetine or JB-1 to BALB/c mice attenuates stress reactivity. Twenty-eight-day treatment of Lactobacillus rhamnosus JB-1 supplied via the drinking water reduced plasma corticosterone levels following restraint stress in BALB/c as compared to water fed controls, but did not in Swiss Webster mice. Two-way repeated measures ANOVA with corrected post-hoc, T60 p = 0.019 and T90 p = 0.05, n = 12/grp. Fourteen day treatment with fluoxetine via the drinking water reduced plasma corticosterone levels following restraint stress in BALB/c as compared to water fed controls, but did not in Swiss Webster mice. Two-way repeated measures ANOVA with corrected post-hoc, T60 p = 0.0072, T90 p = 0.023, n = 12/grp.

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