Microbiota and mood disorders


Microbiota and mood disorders

For a long time, we thought that the source of mood disorders was only cerebral. What if their pathophysiology also involved our gut?

Did you know that the average gut contains between 1 and 2 kg of bacteria? These micro-organisms are of increasing interest to the scientific community. Indeed, researchers have recently shown that an imbalance of this bacterial population, called intestinal microbiota, can impact certain molecules involved in depression. This field of research therefore seems promising to provide new insights on certain mechanisms involved in this pathology.

Treatments for mood disorders are not without effect on the microbiota. Indeed, in depressive disorders, the alteration of the microbiota seems to be different between patients who respond and those who do not respond to antidepressants. Moreover, studies carried out in patients with bipolar disorder suggest that these specific alterations could be considered as biomarkers of the response to pharmacological treatment.

The microbiota can be influenced by a wide variety of factors, such as genetics, environment, mode of birth, diet, but also the use of antibiotics, prebiotics and probiotics. The latter are of particular interest as they could be an innovative treatment avenue, which is already being explored!