Bacteria of the microflora can control the emotions of women, say scientists

© Illustration RIA Novosti . Alina Polarisavenue found that the microflora influences the emotions and behavior of womenBacteria of the microflora can control the emotions of women, say scientists© Illustration RIA Novosti . Alina Polyanina

. Observing the behavior of women and their microflora showed that the characteristics of species composition of microbes in the gut can influence their susceptibility to the development of depression and the manifestation of other emotions, according to an article published in Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Biobehavioral Medicine.

The human body contains about 10 times more bacteria, fungi and other representatives of the microflora than our own cells. Observations of recent years show that microflora can affect not only the human metabolism and the likelihood of developing cancer and other diseases, but also on its behavior.

For example, a year ago, American biologists have discovered, by experimenting on mice that the development of autism may be due to a lack of one kind of germs, bacteria, Lactobasillus reuteri in the gut of children and their mothers. In addition, scientists have repeatedly speculated that microflora can affect more complex behavioral responses, affecting the level of hormones and signaling molecules of the nervous system.

Tillis Kirsten (Kirsten Tillisch) from the University of California at Los Angeles (USA) revealed the unusual connection between the behavior of women and their microflora, watching the brain, four dozen volunteers who agreed to undergo a series of tests to check their emotional reactions.
Before the test Tiles and her colleagues asked women to take all the tests, including samples of their flora, especially in whose species composition scholars have tried to compare differences in responses of women in different emotional stimuli and differences in the structure of their brain.

It turned out that such relationships actually existed. For example, women whose microbiota was observed a large number of bacteria of the genus Bacteroides, the gray matter in the front part of the cortex of their brain was more dense and thick than other study participants, and their hippocampus, the memory center, was much more.

Such women, explains Tillich were less likely to show emotions and also less likely to panic and depression. On the other hand, women in the community, a great number of microbes from the genus Prevotella, characterized by high emotionality and a large number of connections between those brain regions that are responsible for processing information from the senses.

Such women, according to the authors of the discovery, had increased vulnerability to depression, depressed mood was more irritable than other participants of the experiments. In addition, their memory center worse react to emotional stimuli associated with unpleasant events and people.

Similar results, according to Tillich, indicate that the composition of the microflora can indeed be associated with the behavior of people, how it works and even how his head works. It is not clear what is cause and what is consequence, scientists expect to learn whether microbes on the brain, or the brain – on the species composition of the microflora, in the future, more large-scale experiments.