Stroke is currently the second leading cause of death, most commonly caused by blockages preventing blood from reaching the brain. A new study has found that certain types of gut bacteria are able to leverage the immune system to reduce the severity of a stroke. Researchers treated mice with antibiotics and observed an approximate 60 percent smaller stroke as compared to mice that received no antibiotics. Authors explain that the microbial environment in the gut told immune cells to defend the brain, therefore protecting it from the stroke’s full force. Findings also open up the possibility that changing the gut’s macrobiotic properties by altering nutrition, could serve as a new way to prevent stroke in the future.