Novel gut-brain interaction research by David J. Levinthal, MD, PhD and senior researcher Peter Strick, PhD was featured in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette in May 2020.  Dr. Levinthal and colleagues found that parts of the brain’s cerebral cortex can have an impact on the microbiome.  These parts of the brain’s cerebral cortex are associated with emotional control and may help to explain how mental activity can create an encouraging environment for bacteria.  “Our study shows that the activity of neurons in the cerebral cortex, the site of conscious mental function, can impact the ability of bacteria to colonize the stomach and make the person more sensitive to it or more likely to harbor the bacteria,’ Dr. Levinthal said.