Date of Defense


Date of Graduation




First Advisor

Lisa Baker

Second Advisor

Cynthia Pietras


Substance use disorder, methamphetamine, gut microbiome alterations, probiotics


Substance use disorder (SUD) is a chronic, pervasive disease that affects approximately 40.3 million people aged 12 and over within the United States (SAMHSA, 2021). Recent investigations have emphasized preventive measures targeting the development of SUDs and the occurrence of relapse. However, to date, FDA-approved medications are only available for those with alcohol (AUD) and opioid use disorders (OUD) (Forouzan et al., 2021). Given that about 964,000 people have methamphetamine use disorder (MUD) within the United States, investigation of novel treatment approaches for psychostimulant abuse is warranted (Forouzan, Hoffman, and Kosten, 2020). Several negative effects can occur after using methamphetamine such a gut microbiome alterations that can induce depression, impulsivity, and anxiety. Forouzan et al. (2021) proposed that affective disorders may share commonalities within the gut-microbiome. Alterations in gut microbiome composition have been observed in depressed patients (Salavrakos et al., 2020; Zhang et al., 2022). Moreover, this behavioral phenotype has been transferred to mice through a fecal transplant (Zhang et al., 2022). This suggests that alterations in the gut microbiome can influence cognition, emotions, and behaviors. This review contains five preclinical studies and three literature reviews on gut microbiota dysbiosis. The studies within this review show that methamphetamine can induce gut microbial alterations that can induce anxiety and depressive-like symptoms. Given these results, probiotics may be a possible treatment strategy for those with SUD.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Open Access

Presentation.pdf (568 kB)
Defense Presentation

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Psychology Commons