. Host microbiota constantly control maturation and function of microglia in the CNS. Nat Neurosci. 2015 Jun 1; PubMed.


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  1. This is a fascinating study, which conclusively links the gut microbiome to microglial homeostasis. The immune challenges and the models used are quite appropriate. With this and many recent studies (for example: Louveau et al., 2015), the concept of the brain being “immune-privileged” is fading away as many of the regulators of peripheral immune function (including the gut microbiome) are constantly influencing microglial activation and function within the CNS.

    While this study opens up a whole new arena of research on the influence of the microbiome on microglial function, it also opened a lot of questions, including: What is the indirect effect of altered microglial function on neuronal homeostasis (e.g., microglia-mediated synaptic pruning and plasticity) and function? What is the role of SCFAs derived from a commensal “healthy” microbiome versus the ones derived following bacterial infection?


    . Structural and functional features of central nervous system lymphatic vessels. Nature. 2015 Jul 16;523(7560):337-41. Epub 2015 Jun 1 PubMed.

    View all comments by Kiran Bhaskar
  2. This is an important study that indicates how important the gut microcbiome is to brain health via microglial activation. Further investigation into SCFA food sources and their impact on disease processes/immunology should prove very interesting to budding connections in the field of gastroenteroneuroimmunology.

    View all comments by Betty Lacy

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  1. To Be Hale and Hearty, Brain Microglia Need a Healthy Gut