Deakin University

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IgA/IgM responses to gram-negative bacteria are not associated with perinatal depression, but with physio-somatic symptoms and activation of the tryptophan catabolite pathway at the end of term and postnatal anxiety

journal contribution
posted on 2023-10-23, 02:38 authored by C Roomruangwong, B Kanchanatawan, S Sirivichayakul, G Anderson, A F Carvalho, S Duleu, M Geffard, Michael Maes
Background: Evidence has implicated the translocation of commensal Gram-negative bacteria (Gram-B) due to leaky gut in the pathophysiology of depression and physio-somatic symptoms (e.g. fatigue, pain, irritable bowel syndrome, malaise, etc.). In addition, the leaky gut may contribute to immune-inflammatory activation and oxidative stress. This study investigated whether bacterial translocation is associated with perinatal depression and anxiety scores and with prenatal physio-somatic symptoms and immune-inflammatory biomarkers, including the tryptophan catabolite (TRYCAT) pathway. Method: Data were collected in pregnant women at the end of term (T1) and 4-6 weeks after delivery (T2) as well as in non-pregnant controls. We examined the associations between serum IgM/IgA responses to Gram-B at the end of term and depression (Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale -EPDS) and anxiety (Spielberger’s State Anxiety Inventory -STAI) symptoms. Results: Levels of C-reactive protein, zinc, haptoglobin, hematocrit and IgA/IgM responses to 9 TRY-CATs were also measured. No significant associations of the IgA/IgM responses to Gram-B with prenatal depression and anxiety were observed. Increased IgA/IgM responses to Gram-B predict higher levels of haptoglobin, hematocrit and TRYCATs, in particular quinolinic acid and the quinolinic acid/kynurenic acid ratio. IgA responses to Gram-B were significantly lowered in pregnant women compared to age-matched non-pregnant women, while IgM responses were significantly elevated in participants with alcohol consumption. Physio-somatic symptoms at the end of term were significantly associated with IgM responses to Klebsiella pneumonia. Postnatal anxiety was significantly predicted by IgA responses to Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that pregnancy may protect against bacterial translocation, while alcohol use may increase bacterial translocation. The results suggest that end of term mucosa-derived immune responses to Gram-B contribute to immune activation, physio-somatic symptoms at the end of term and postnatal anxiety. Highlights: • Immune responses to Gram - Bacteria associate with physio-somatic symptoms in pregnancy. • IgA responses to Pseudomonas aeruginosa predict anxiety symptoms after delivery. • Pregnancy may have a protective effect against bacterial translocation. • Alcohol use increases leaky gut and bacterial translocation.



CNS and Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets




472 - 483


Beijing, China







Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal