Psychobiotic Effects of Multi-Strain Probiotics Originated from Thai Fermented Foods in a Rat Model
Received: May 18, 2020 ; Revised: Aug 13, 2020 ; Accepted: Aug 20, 2020
Published Online: Sep 03, 2020
This work aimed to investigate the psychobiotic effects of six bacterial strains on the mind and behavior of male Wistar rats. The probiotic (PRO) group (n = 7) were rats pre-treated with antibiotics for 7 days followed by 14-day probiotic administration, antibiotics (ANT) group (n = 7) were rats treated with antibiotics for 21 days without probiotics. The control (CON) group (n = 7) were rats that received sham treatment for 21 days. The six bacterial strains with probiotic properties were mostly isolated from Thai fermented foods; Pedicoccus pentosaceus WS11, Lactobacillus plantarum SK321, L. fermentum SK324, L. brevis TRBC 3003, Bifidobacterium adolescentis TBRC 7154 and Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis TBRC 375. The probiotics were freeze-dried into powder (6×109 CFU/5 g) and administered to the PRO group via oral gavage. Behavioral tests were performed. The PRO group displayed significantly reduced anxiety level and increased locomotor function using a marble burying test and open field test, respectively and significantly improved short-term memory performance using a novel object recognition test. Antibiotics significantly reduced microbial counts in rat feces in the ANT group by 100 fold compared to the PRO group. Probiotics significantly enhanced antioxidant enzymatic and non-enzymatic defenses in rat brains as assessed using catalase activity and ferric reducing antioxidant power assay, respectively. Probiotics also showed neuroprotective effects with less pyknotic cells and lower frequency of vacuolization in cerebral cortex. This multi-strain probiotic formulation from Thai fermented foods may offer a potential to develop psychobiotic-rich functional foods to modulate human mind and behaviors.