Stress and Our Missing Old Friends

Yesterday I devoted several hours to reading a fascinating article on the connection between stress and the microbiome.[i]  The conclusion:  the lack of exposure to our “old friends” (those commensal organisms with which humans co-evolved) has caused immune dysregulation, leading to a greater susceptibility to the adverse effects of stress…and that stress, in turn, has … More Stress and Our Missing Old Friends

Autism and the Early Bacterial Microbiome

Last month, a review paper[i] came out on the implications of the disruption of the  bacterial microbiome in autism.  I was hoping to find something new in it and was not disappointed. A few highlights. As the bacterial microbiota are crucial for the production of many important vitamins, they “…can exert an important influence over … More Autism and the Early Bacterial Microbiome

Stress, Inflammation and the Human Biome

Today’s post hits a little too close to home.  I just read about a fascinating study done at Ohio State University that highlights something about which I am only too personally aware:  the effects of stress on health.[i] In this particular case, researchers were looking at the connection between marital problems and health issues, and … More Stress, Inflammation and the Human Biome

Stress and Autoimmune Disease: A Relationship that is Becoming More Defined

One of the big medical news stories of the week was the results of 30 years’ worth of research published in JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association), examining the connection between stress and the development of autoimmune disease.[i]  Over 1 million people in Sweden were tracked for 3 decades, and 100,000 of those … More Stress and Autoimmune Disease: A Relationship that is Becoming More Defined

A Probiotic Vaccine Against Anxiety and PTSD?!

In May 2017 I wrote about some really exciting research into the probiotic bacteria Lactobacillus reuteri (which is derived from human breast milk) in both PTSD and autism.  If you remember, I mentioned that a clinical trial would be conducted on 40 veterans with PTSD.  According to clinicaltrials.gov, the study concluded at the end of … More A Probiotic Vaccine Against Anxiety and PTSD?!

The American Gut Project: Some Initial Findings

In 2012, 3 scientists from the University of California, San Diego, started The American Gut Project, the largest crowd funded “citizen science project in existence.”[i]  Ordinary people can send in a stool sample along with a questionnaire (about diet and lifestyle choices), and $99 USD, and receive back an analysis of their bacterial microbiomes – … More The American Gut Project: Some Initial Findings