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Bioessays. 2014 Oct;36(10):933-9. doi: 10.1002/bies.201400075. Epub 2014 Aug 22.

Altered brain-gut axis in autism: comorbidity or causative mechanisms?

Author information

1
Oppenheimer Center for Neurobiology of Stress, Division of Digestive Diseases, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USA.

Abstract

The concept that alterated communications between the gut microbiome and the brain may play an important role in human brain disorders has recently received considerable attention. This is the result of provocative preclinical and some clinical evidence supporting early hypotheses about such communication in health and disease. Gastrointestinal symptoms are a common comorbidity in patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), even though the underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. In addition, alteration in the composition and metabolic products of the gut microbiome has long been implicated as a possible causative mechanism contributing to ASD pathophysiology, and this hypothesis has been supported by several recently published evidence from rodent models of autism induced by prenatal insults to the mother. Recent evidence in one such model involving maternal infection, that is characterized by alterations in behavior, gut physiology, microbial composition, and related metabolite profile, suggests a possible benefit of probiotic treatment on several of the observed abnormal behaviors.

KEYWORDS:

brain gut interactions; gut microbiome; intestinal permeability; neurodevelopment disorder

PMID:
25145752
DOI:
10.1002/bies.201400075
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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