State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology, Jiangnan University, Wuxi, Jiangsu, China; School of Food Science and Technology, Jiangnan University, Wuxi, Jiangsu, China; International Joint Research Center for Probiotics & Gut Health, Jiangnan University, Wuxi, Jiangsu, China; (Yangzhou) Institute of Food Biotechnology, Jiangnan University, Yangzhou, Jiangsu, China. Electronic address: [Email]
Depression disorder is rapidly advancing worldwide, and therapeutic strategy through gut-brain axis has been proven to be effective in the treatment. Here we studied the effect of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) treatment on depression. C57BL/6J mice were administered with LAB during a 5-week chronic unpredictable mild stress. Bifidobacterium longum subsp. infantis E41 and Bifidobacterium breve M2CF22M7, which improved the expression of Tph1 and secretion of 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) in RIN14B cells, significantly reduced depressive behaviors of mice in the forced swim test, sucrose preference test and step-down test, as well as increased the level of 5-hydroxytryptamine and brain-derived neurotrophic factor concentration in brain. Besides, M2CF22M7 reduced the serum corticosterone level. E41 increased cecal butyrate level, which significantly and positively correlated with some depression-related indexes. Using 16S rRNA-amplicon sequencing of faces, E41 and M2CF22M7 were found to improve the chronic-stress-induced microbial dysbiosis. They also normalized the host's pathways involving metabolism and gene information processing. These results indicate that Bifidobacterium E41 and M2CF22M7 have an antidepressant effect in mice partly in a 5-HTP dependent and microbiota-regulating manner. Nurturing the gut microbiota with these strains may become an emerging therapeutic way for mood disorder.