A clinical study on the effect of a probiotic formulation on memory, learning, anxiety, and mood
LE3 .A278 2016
Bachelor of Science
Animal studies have shown that probiotics influence brain functioning via the gut-brain axis, exerting positive effects on anxiety and behaviour. The aim of the present study was to extend these findings to humans, in a clinical trial exploring the effects of probiotics on anxiety, mood, and memory in adults. Participants (n=46) consumed either a placebo or probiotic supplement for five weeks. Mood, anxiety, and memory were assessed pre-and post-intervention, using a variety of anxiety and mood measures, as well as verbal and visual memory tasks. In this small sample, no significant differences between the probiotic and placebo group were found. Both groups significantly improved on the anxiety and mood measures. There was no change in memory. A powerful placebo response likely contributed to the inability to detect a probiotic effect. Due to the absence of a probiotic effect, the relationship between memory and anxiety could not be quantified.
The author grants permission to the University Librarian at Acadia University to reproduce, loan or distribute copies of my thesis in microform, paper or electronic formats on a non-profit basis. The author retains the copyright of the thesis.