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The gut-brain axis: Emerging evidence in health and disease

Scientists and clinicians have long been fascinated by the relationship between the brain and the gut, however our understanding of the mechanisms behind this complex and bidirectional interaction is still only basic. This interaction, termed the gut-brain axis (also known as the brain-gut axis), is thought to be involved in many regular functions and systems within the healthy body, in addition to the pathogenesis of many diseases from neurological and degenerative conditions to autoimmune diseases. The gut-brain axis is now being investigated as a potential target for treatment of these diseases. This collection brings together research published in BioMed Central journals into all aspects of the gut-brain axis and its role in health and disease.

This is a retrospective collection, collated from previously published articles from BioMed Central journals.

Collection published: 23 May 2014

  1. Content type: Research

    A healthy gut with normal intestinal microflora is completely disrupted by oral antibiotics. The byproducts of harmful gut bacteria can interfere with brain development and may contribute to autism. Strategies...

    Authors: Afaf El-Ansary, Ramesa Shafi Bhat, Sooad Al-Daihan and Abeer M Al Dbass

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2015 7:7

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  2. Content type: Research article

    The ingestion of a high-fat diet (HFD) and the resulting obese state can exert a multitude of stressors on the individual including anxiety and cognitive dysfunction. Though many studies have shown that exerci...

    Authors: Silvia S Kang, Patricio R Jeraldo, Aishe Kurti, Margret E Berg Miller, Marc D Cook, Keith Whitlock, Nigel Goldenfeld, Jeffrey A Woods, Bryan A White, Nicholas Chia and John D Fryer

    Citation: Molecular Neurodegeneration 2014 9:36

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  3. Content type: Review

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional syndrome characterized by chronic abdominal pain accompanied by altered bowel habits. Although generally considered a functional disorder, there is now substantia...

    Authors: Mihaela Fadgyas-Stanculete, Ana-Maria Buga, Aurel Popa-Wagner and Dan L Dumitrascu

    Citation: Journal of Molecular Psychiatry 2014 2:4

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  4. Content type: Research

    The visceral sensitivity index (VSI) is a useful self-report measure of the gastrointestinal symptom-specific anxiety (GSA) of patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Previous research has shown that wor...

    Authors: Tatsuo Saigo, Jun Tayama, Toyohiro Hamaguchi, Naoki Nakaya, Tadaaki Tomiie, Peter J Bernick, Motoyori Kanazawa, Jennifer S Labus, Bruce D Naliboff, Susumu Shirabe and Shin Fukudo

    Citation: BioPsychoSocial Medicine 2014 8:10

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  5. Content type: Review

    Intestinal nematodes affecting dogs, i.e. roundworms, hookworms and whipworms, have a relevant health-risk impact for animals and, for most of them, for human beings. Both dogs and humans are typically infecte...

    Authors: Donato Traversa, Antonio Frangipane di Regalbono, Angela Di Cesare, Francesco La Torre, Jason Drake and Mario Pietrobelli

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2014 7:67

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  6. Content type: Research

    The innate immune response is the first line of defence against invading microorganisms and it is also activated in different neurologic/neurodegenerative pathological scenarios. As a result, the family of the...

    Authors: Iciar Gárate, Borja García-Bueno, José Luis Muñoz Madrigal, Javier R Caso, Luis Alou, María Luisa Gómez-Lus and Juan Carlos Leza

    Citation: Journal of Neuroinflammation 2014 11:8

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  7. Content type: Research article

    Intracellular calcium signaling regulates a variety of cellular and physiological processes. The inositol 1,4,5 trisphosphate receptor (IP3R) is a ligand gated calcium channel present on the membranes of endoplas...

    Authors: Manivannan Subramanian, Siddharth Jayakumar, Shlesha Richhariya and Gaiti Hasan

    Citation: BMC Neuroscience 2013 14:157

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  8. Content type: Research

    Human and animals studies support the idea that there is a gender-related co-morbidity of pain-related and inflammatory gastrointestinal (GI) diseases with psychological disorders. This co-morbidity is the evi...

    Authors: Jia Luo, Tao Wang, Shan Liang, Xu Hu, Wei Li and Feng Jin

    Citation: Behavioral and Brain Functions 2013 9:46

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  9. Content type: Research article

    Psychopathology seems to play a role in reflux pathogenesis and vice versa, yet few population-based studies have systematically investigated the association between gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) an...

    Authors: Livia Sanna, Amanda L Stuart, Michael Berk, Julie A Pasco, Paolo Girardi and Lana J Williams

    Citation: BMC Psychiatry 2013 13:194

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  10. Content type: Research

    Toxoplasma gondii is an intracellular parasite that can modulate host responses and presumably host behavior. Host responses as well as pathogenesis vary depending on the parasite strains that are responsible for...

    Authors: Boyin Jia, Huijun Lu, Quan Liu, Jigang Yin, Ning Jiang and Qijun Chen

    Citation: Parasites & Vectors 2013 6:161

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  11. Content type: Review

    The existence of microbe free animals or plants in nature is virtually impossible as they and plants have a certain degree of symbiotic association with microbes. This symbiotic association leads to the format...

    Authors: Yadvir Singh, Javed Ahmad, Javed Musarrat, Nasreen Z Ehtesham and Seyed E Hasnain

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2013 5:12

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  12. Content type: Research

    Comet assay is a quick method for assessing DNA damage in individual cells. It allows the detection of single and double DNA strand breaks, which represent the direct effect of some damaging agents. This study...

    Authors: Afaf El-Ansary, Ghada H Shaker, Amina R El-Gezeery and Laila Al-Ayadhi

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2013 5:9

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  13. Content type: Review

    Mental health disorders, depression in particular, have been described as a global epidemic. Research suggests that a variety of lifestyle and environmental changes may be driving at least some portion of the ...

    Authors: Alison C Bested, Alan C Logan and Eva M Selhub

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2013 5:5

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  14. Content type: Review

    Rapid scientific and technological advances have allowed for a more detailed understanding of the relevance of intestinal microbiota, and the entire body-wide microbiome, to human health and well-being. Rodent...

    Authors: Alison C Bested, Alan C Logan and Eva M Selhub

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2013 5:4

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  15. Content type: Review

    In recent years there has been a renewed interest concerning the ways in which the gastrointestinal tract – its functional integrity and microbial residents – might influence human mood (e.g. depression) and b...

    Authors: Alison C Bested, Alan C Logan and Eva M Selhub

    Citation: Gut Pathogens 2013 5:3

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  16. Content type: Research

    Previous studies have reported that patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) show high neuroticism. However, the precise association between the IBS subtypes and the degree of neuroticism in younger popula...

    Authors: Jun Tayama, Naoki Nakaya, Toyohiro Hamaguchi, Tadaaki Tomiie, Masae Shinozaki, Tatsuo Saigo, Susumu Shirabe and Shin Fukudo

    Citation: BioPsychoSocial Medicine 2012 6:20

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