Published online Oct 28, 2020. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v26.i40.6141
Peer-review started: July 8, 2020
First decision: August 8, 2020
Revised: August 29, 2020
Accepted: September 18, 2020
Article in press: September 18, 2020
Published online: October 28, 2020
The gut-brain axis is a bidirectional information interaction system between the central nervous system (CNS) and the gastrointestinal tract, in which gut microbiota plays a key role. The gut microbiota forms a complex network with the enteric nervous system, the autonomic nervous system, and the neuroendocrine and neuroimmunity of the CNS, which is called the microbiota-gut-brain axis. Due to the close anatomical and functional interaction of the gut-liver axis, the microbiota-gut-liver-brain axis has attracted increased attention in recent years. The microbiota-gut-liver-brain axis mediates the occurrence and development of many diseases, and it offers a direction for the research of disease treatment. In this review, we mainly discuss the role of the gut microbiota in the irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, functional dyspepsia, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, alcoholic liver disease, cirrhosis and hepatic encephalopathy via the gut-liver-brain axis, and the focus is to clarify the potential mechanisms and treatment of digestive diseases based on the further understanding of the microbiota-gut- liver-brain axis.
Core Tip: Microbiota-gut-liver-brain axis regulates the occurrence and development of many diseases, and it offers a new direction for research on the treatment of diseases. In recent years, there have been more and more studies on the microbiota-gut-liver-brain axis, which not only increases the understanding of its pathogenesis, but also provides many novel treatment methods. We herein discuss the role of microbiota-gut-liver-brain axis in digestive diseases with a focus on clarifying the potential mechanisms and treatment.