Study says microbes could cause brain disorders



Scientists say new evidence has revealed that microorganisms can cause brain disorders, noting that the discovery can also provide a clue that would lead to better treatments for brain diseases.

The scientists in the research published on February 3 in Nature, an online open-access journal, said, “Studies in mice and preliminary work in humans — suggest that microbes can trigger or alter the course of conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, autism spectrum disorder and more”.

They added that therapies aimed at tweaking the microbiome could help to prevent or treat these diseases.

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Microbes, also called microorganisms are tiny organisms that can’t be seen with the eye. They are found in every environment on earth, including the human body.

They are a range of microscopic organisms, which include bacteria, fungi, viruses, protists and the likes.

Sarkis Mazmanian, a microbiologist at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, one of the researchers, says while it is early days, the prospect of new therapies for some intractable brain diseases is exciting.

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However, reacting to the study, the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Academy of Science, Dr. Doyin Odubanjo, says while the study’s conclusion that microbes can move from the gut to the brain may still be a bit theoretical, it is not impossible.

“While I will say it is unlikely for microbes to go from the gut to the brain, I will not say it is impossible.

“I know that when microbes get to the brain they can cause problems. For instance, they can cause meningitis.

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“I must also state that we have microorganisms all over the human body. Some are even beneficial to the body.

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