Herbal formula restores sleep by rebalancing gut microbiome
The Chinese herbal formula Tian Wang Bu Xin granules (TWBXG) can help to rectify disturbances in the intestinal microflora that are associated with perimenopausal insomnia (PI), report Chinese investigators. Subjects in their study consisted of 13 PI patients whose non-insomniac spouses acted as controls. TWBXG was administered for four weeks, during which time the faeces of the patients and their spouses were collected. The intestinal flora composition and abundance of each group was analysed via metagenomic sequencing, and the efficacy of TWBXG was evaluated using sleep scores. PI was observed to be associated with disturbances in the relative abundance of several important species of the intestinal microbiome. Compared with the control group, the abundance of Blautia obeum, Roseburia faecis, Ruminococcus, Prevotella copri and Fusicatenibacter saccharivorans in the PI group was found to be higher, while that of Faecalibacterium prausnitzii, Bacteroides and faecal Bacteroidetes was lower. Compared with pretreatment, sleep scores were significantly improved after PI patients had been treated with TWBXG for four weeks, and the previously observed disturbances in their microflora were observed to have disappeared. A significant increase in the abundance of Bifidobacteria and Lactobacilli was also observed, suggesting that TWBXG not only restored disordered flora to a normal state, but also increased the abundance of known probiotic organisms to achieve a synergistic effect.