Microbial-derived metabolites are the intermediate or end products of bacterial digestion. They are one of the most important molecules for the gut to connect with the brain. Depending on the levels of specific metabolites produced in the host, it can exert beneficial or detrimental effects on the brain and have been linked to several neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders. However, the underlying mechanisms remain largely unexplored. Insight into these mechanisms could reveal new pathways or targets, resulting in novel treatment approaches targeting neurodegenerative diseases. We have reviewed selected metabolites, including short-chain fatty acids, aromatic amino acids, trimethylamine-N-oxide, urolithin A, anthocyanins, equols, imidazole, and propionate to highlight their mechanism of action, underlying role in maintaining intestinal homeostasis and regulating neuro-immunoendocrine function. Further discussed on how altered metabolite levels can influence the gut–brain axis could lead to new prevention strategies or novel treatment approaches to neural disorders.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology