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Thank you for visiting the Acadia University's Probiotics and Mental Health research Site. On this website, you will find information about new and exciting research opportunities on the effects of probiotics. If you or your child are interested in participating in our research, please read the information on this website and feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns. We look forward to hearing from you!

Unfortunately, we are not currently enroling participants in our studies at this time. However, we hope to begin enrolment soon. If you would like to participate, please click on the red "participate" button below, choose the appropriate study, and complete the short questionnaire. Be sure to include your email address. We will get in touch with you once we begin accepting participants. Thank-you for your interest in our research.

Probiotics and the Microbiome


The gut is home to trillions of bacteria, both good and bad, which together form the gut microbiome. Good bacteria are referred to as probiotics and play a role in normal human development, digestion, body weight, nutritional status, brain functioning, and immune system regulation. It has been found that environmental factors including antibiotics, cesarean birth, illness, stress, and diet can disrupt the balance of bacteria in the microbiome and contribute to a variety of health problems, both mental and physical.

The Gut-Brain Relationship

Microbiome disturbances have been implicated in the development of autism and a variety of other mental health conditions, including anxiety and depression, through a connection labeled the "gut-brain axis". For example, there is a strong link between gastrointestinal disturbances and anxiety/depression, which in turn are associated with disturbances of the gut microbiome. Disruptions in the development of a normal microbiome have been associated with alterations in stress reactivity that continue into later life. The high incidence of comorbidity between stress related psychiatric disorders, such as anxiety and depression, and gastrointestinal disorders is further evidence of this gut-brain relationship.

October 2nd, 2013

Acadia Research Night at the Wolfville Farmers Market


Contact Information

Dr. Susan Potter
Head Researcher
Tel: (902) 585-1220
Email: susan.potter@acadiau.ca

Adult Research Inquiries
Email: probiotics.study@gmail.com

Department of Psychology
Horton Hall
Acadia University
18 University Avenue
Wolfville, NS
B4P 2R6

Child Research Inquiries
Email: probiotickids@gmail.com

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