Hormones of happiness as a medicine against gastro-intestinal infections?

The "Glückshormon" Serotonin is known for its role in the brain, where it creates a feeling of Serenity, inner peace and satisfaction. It is produced in large quantities but also in the gastro-intestinal tract, where it, according to a new study in the journal "Cell Host & Microbe" Infections can reduce with the dangerous intestinal bacteria.

Researchers from the University medical center in Dallas have found that certain E. coli bacteria to food infections, can be inhibited in the laboratory by Serotonin. Then they conducted the same experiment with a related pathogen in mice. Here, too, showed that mice produced much Serotonin in your gastro-intestinal tract, were less often infected with the bacterium Citrobacter rodentium and less severe diseases were. Mice that received an antidepressant to increase serotonin levels, sufferers also rare. Other mice, however, produced too little Serotonin, had a significantly more severe course of the disease.

In further experiments, the scientists identified the point on the surface of the bacteria species to which Serotonin binds. This Receptor is also found on many other types of intestinal bacteria present, so that the researchers assume that Serotonin has far-reaching effects on the intestinal health.

Study leader Prof. Dr. Vanessa Sperandio is now planning to investigate with your Team, whether serotonin levels can be altered in the intestine, specifically, bacterial gastro-intestinal fight infections. The bacterium E. coli O157 can only be by a few antibiotics effective against other antibiotics worsen, however, the infection, because they cause the bacteria and harmful toxins to release.


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