Overview

Thank you for your interest in Bugs and Brains: The Gut and Mental Health Study!

There is growing interest in the link between the human microbiome (i.e., bacteria that live in our bodies) and human health. The Bugs and Brains Study is aiming to better understand the role of the microbiome, particularly in relation to some common mental and physical health conditions. We are also interested in learning about how the microbiome is related to biological functions (such as levels of hormones and inflammation), stress, and wellbeing. Please click on the Background tab for detailed background information about the study.

Participation in the Bugs and Brains Study involves the completion of online questionnaires, an interview, and the collection of faecal, urine, saliva, and hair samples. Participants who do not meet the eligibility criteria for, or would prefer not to take part in, the biological samples, will be asked to complete the online questionnaires only.

The main aim of the Bugs and Brains Study is to compare the microbial and physiological profiles of four groups of people:

  1. healthy adult women
  2. women with depression &/or anxiety disorders (who are not currently taking anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication),
  3. women with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and
  4. women with both depression &/or anxiety and IBS (who are not currently taking anti-depressant or anti-anxiety medication).

If you think you fit into one of these four groups, you may be eligible to participate in all components of the Bugs and Brains Study. If not, you may be eligible to participate in the questionnaire-only components of the study. Click on the 'Am I Eligible' tab above to find out more.