AccScience Publishing / AN / Volume 1 / Issue 3 / DOI: 10.36922/an.v1i3.272
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Gut-brain axis in depression: Crosstalk between neuroinflammation and gut microbiota

Yang Cai1 Shenyang Zhang2 Sibo Zhao1 Honghong Yao1,3,4*
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1 Department of Pharmacology, Jiangsu Provincial Key Laboratory of Critical Care Medicine, School of Medicine, Southeast University, Nanjing, China
2 Department of Neurology, The Affiliated Hospital of Xuzhou Medical University, Xuzhou, Jiangsu, China
3 Co-innovation Center of Neuroregeneration, Nantong University, Nantong, China
4 Institute of Life Sciences, Key Laboratory of Developmental Genes and Human Disease, Southeast University, Nanjing, China
Advanced Neurology 2022, 1(3), 272
Submitted: 22 November 2022 | Accepted: 30 December 2022 | Published: 16 January 2023
© 2023 by the Author(s). This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( )

Depression is the most common mental disorder and the leading cause of disability and suicide worldwide. Recently, during the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of patients with depression on a global scale. Therefore, new insights into the underlying pathophysiology of depression are urgently required to develop more effective therapeutic strategies. An interesting fact is the coexistence of increased intestinal permeability and disrupted blood-brain barrier observed in patients with depression and animal models. A growing number of studies have revealed that a bidirectional interaction exists between the brain and the gastrointestinal tract, commonly termed the gut-brain axis. Emerging evidence has suggested that the regulation of neuroinflammation and gut homeostasis through the gut-brain axis is influenced by stress and depression, in which gut microbiota and microbe-derived short-chain fatty acids play a crucial role. Here, we describe the molecular and cellular mechanisms involved in the crosstalk between neuroinflammation and gut microbiota in depression. We further highlight fecal microbiota transplantation and dietary supplementation in depression and discuss their potential as therapeutic targets for depression.

Gut-brain axis
Short-chain fatty acids
Science and Technology Innovation 2030-Major Project of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China
National Natural Science Foundation of Distinguished Young Scholars
National Natural Science Foundation of China
Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities

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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
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