Can probiotics augment the effect of pharmaceuticals in the treatment of mood disorders?

March 21, 2018

The greatest challenge in treating mood disorders is the time it takes to match an individual with a mood disorder to a treatment that works for them. First-line pharmaceuticals such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are effective only in a subset of individuals.  Augmentation of a first-line treatment with other anti-depressants is common in patients who fail to respond to the first antidepressant.

To date, no clinical studies using probiotics as an augmentation to first-line antidepressants have been conducted, however, this is an attractive option as probiotics may have anti-inflammatory benefits or other benefits to gut physiology that may improve mood in some individuals.