Commensal bacteria in the human intestine produce a neurotransmitter called GABA that may play a role in preventing or treating inflammatory bowel disease. Bifidobacter dentium produces large amounts of GABA that regulates pain and inflammation. GABA may reduce pain and inflammation by stimulating the GABA receptor sites on nerve cells in the brain and gut.
GABA is known to regulate muscle tone, calms us emotionally, is important in brain development, and relieves pain and inflammation. Some drugs and herbs that promote the effects of GABA include valerian root, Valium, barbiturates, kava, l-glutamine, and lemon balm.