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Women with a higher concentration of Bacteroides in their guts had a larger volume of the hippocampus, a region involved in learning and memory, and more gray matter in the frontal cortex and insula, brain regions involved with complex processing of information.
Women with a higher concentration of Prevotella in their guts had lower brain volumes in several brain regions, such as the hippocampus, but had more connections between emotional, attentional and sensory brain regions.
While this research supports the connection between the gut microbiome and the brain, the mechanisms for how different types of gut bacteria affect the brain are still not known. It’s an exciting time to be in this field of research!
This reminds me of a study I read about where scientists reversed autism in mice with B.Fragilis. After reading about that specific bacterioide, I discovered that it is a common target of antibiotic therapy because it is commonly found at the site of infection. I then wondered if the correlation might be mistaken as causal. I wonder if the B.Fragilis is showing up at the site of infection in order to try and repair it.