An inspirational woman in science

Find out about pioneering neuroscientist, Dr Lynne Barker’s, latest research into the gut-brain axis in our expert interview

Gut-brain axis Dr Lynne Barker

Dr Lynne Barker is an associate professor in cognitive neuroscience at Sheffield Hallam University and pioneer in the field of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Her latest research into the gut-brain axis sheds important light on this key physiological connection in relation to the microbiome. 

In our interview with Dr Barker, she explains: “It’s not about the brain sending commands to the gut and the gut silently obeying, but rather the constant stream of communication between the gut and the brain. We’re now finding that the bacteria that constitute the microbiome can use this mechanism to communicate with the brain and can potentially move via the vagus nerve from the gut to the brain.” 

She adds, “There is a lot of evidence to show you can improve health and gut conditions using prebiotics and probiotics. That has been accepted as a therapeutic target for quite some time in gut-based conditions. However, now we’re also seeing potential with other conditions.”  

Add Dr Barker’s book to your wish list 

Dr Barker says, “As part of writing my book, I came across microbiome research. I started to think about that in relation to Parkinson’s disease and that gave me the impetus to consider the gut microbiome in my research.” 

Look out for more details on Dr Lynne Barker’s book soon!  

Publication date: February 2022

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