The Relation of the Human Gut Microbiome to Mental Health
The human gut microbiome is closely linked to mental health and sleep. Mental health disorders are caused by someone’s abnormal thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.
The human gut microbiome is implicated in mental health. The perturbation of this axis leads to altered stress response and behaviors, and has been proposed to be involved in several psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
Improvements in the diversity and function of the gut microbiome due to diet have the potential to improve mental health via the BGM axis. Therefore, taking probiotics (a preparation of live beneficial microorganisms) may be therapeutic for psychiatric symptoms by promoting a healthy gut microbiome.
This study aimed to improve stress, depression, anxiety, and sleep disturbances using probiotic NVP-1704 ( a mixture of Lactobacillus Reuteri NK33 and Bifidobacterium Adolescentis NK98) and verify its safety and efficacy.
The Study on NVP-1704 Probiotic for Mental Health Issues.
156 healthy adults with subclinical symptoms of insomnia, depression, and anxiety were registered and randomly assigned to receive either NVP-1704 or a placebo for eight weeks.
Participants completed the following tests:
- Stress Response Inventory (SRI)
- Beck’s Depression Inventory (BDI-II) or Beck’s Anxiety Inventory (BAI)
All participants were asked to complete questionnaires regarding symptoms of stress, depression, and anxiety at the first, third, and final visits.
Subjective sleep quality and symptoms of insomnia were assessed using the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) and Insomnia Severity Index (ISI).
Pre and post-treatment blood tests were conducted for biomarkers.
Gut microbiota composition was quantified by pyrosequencing the bacterial 16S rRNA gene after the intervention.
Results of the Study on Probiotics Against Depressive Symptoms
No significant differences were found in the baseline demographic and characteristics between the experimental and control groups.
Studies showed that the Probiotic group significantly reduced depressive symptoms in four to eight weeks of treatment and anxiety symptoms at four weeks compared to the placebo group.
The participants that received NVP-1704 also experienced improved sleep quality, which led to a decrease in levels of serum interleukin-6.
Studies also showed an increase of Bifidobacteriaceae and Lactobacillaceae and decreased Enterobacteriaceae in the gut microbiota composition for the probiotic group.
Bifidobacteriaceae is a family of bacteria that includes Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium. It is the dominant family in the human gut microbiome and is known for its anti-inflammatory effects. On the other hand, Enterobacteriaceae is a type of bacteria that is harmful to humans.
The studies suggest that probiotic NVP-1704 could be beneficial for mental health and sleep.
The study also revealed a significant reduction in serum pro-inflammatory cytokine IL-6 levels after NVP-1704 treatment.
The microbiome analysis showed that individuals treated with NVP-1704 had a gut microbiota composition with smaller ratios of Enterobacteriaceae to Bifidobacteriaceae and Enterobacteriaceae to Lactobacillaceae, which is associated with better mental health.