Enduring Behavioral Effects Induced by Birth by Caesarean Section in the Mouse

Livia H. Morais, Anna V. Golubeva, Gerard M. Moloney, Angela Moya-Pérez, Ana Paula Ventura-Silva, Silvia Arboleya, Thomaz F.S. Bastiaanssen, Orla O'Sullivan, Kieran Rea, Yuliya Borre, Karen A. Scott, Elaine Patterson, Paul Cherry, Roman Stilling, Alan E. Hoban, Sahar El Aidy, Ana M. Sequeira, Sasja Beers, Rachel D. Moloney, Ingrid B. RenesShugui Wang, Jan Knol, R.P. Ross, Paul W. O'Toole, Paul D. Cotter, Catherine Stanton, Timothy G. Dinan, John F. Cryan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Birth by Caesarean (C)-section impacts early gut microbiota colonization and is associated with an increased risk of developing immune and metabolic disorders. Moreover, alterations of the microbiome have been shown to affect neurodevelopmental trajectories. However, the long-term effects of C-section on neurobehavioral processes remain unknown. Here, we demonstrated that birth by C-section results in marked but transient changes in microbiome composition in the mouse, in particular, the abundance of Bifidobacterium spp. was depleted in early life. Mice born by C-section had enduring social, cognitive, and anxiety deficits in early life and adulthood. Interestingly, we found that these specific behavioral alterations induced by the mode of birth were also partially corrected by co-housing with vaginally born mice. Finally, we showed that supplementation from birth with a Bifidobacterium breve strain, or with a dietary prebiotic mixture that stimulates the growth of bifidobacteria, reverses selective behavioral alterations in C-section mice. Taken together, our data link the gut microbiota to behavioral alterations in C-section-born mice and suggest the possibility of developing adjunctive microbiota-targeted therapies that may help to avert long-term negative consequences on behavior associated with C-section birth mode.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3761-3774.e6
JournalCurrent Biology
Volume30
Issue number19
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2020

Keywords

  • behavior
  • Caesarean section
  • co-housing
  • gut-brain axis
  • microbiota
  • microbiota gut-brain axis
  • prebiotics
  • probiotics

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