Acute diarrhoea continues to be a leading cause of morbidity, hospitalisation, and mortality worldwide, and probiotics have been proposed as a complementary therapy in the treatment of acute diarrhoea. The goal of this study is to assess the efficacy and safety of three combined probiotic strains, Bifidobacterium lactis Bi-07, Lactobacillus rhamnosus HN001, and Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM, as an adjunct to rehydration therapy in treatment of acute watery diarrhoea in hospitalised children. Eligible diarrheal children were randomised into intervention group (IG, n=96, conventional treatment for diarrhoea in combination with probiotics) and control group (CG, n=98, conventional treatment for diarrhoea without probiotics). The primary assessments of this study were duration of diarrhoea and hospital stay and improvement in diarrhoea symptoms. Significantly more children in the IG showed improvements in diarrhoea (defined as a decrease of stool frequency to no more than four times per day and an improved stool consistency within 24-48 h after the treatment) than those in the CG (96.9 vs 79.6%, P<0.05). Children supplemented with the mixed strains had a 22.5 h shorter (121.4 +/- 13.7 h vs 143.9 +/- 19.8 h) mean duration of diarrhoea and 1.2 d shorter hospital stays (5.1 +/- 1.2 d vs 6.3 +/- 1.4 d) than children only receiving the rehydration therapy (P<0.05). The prevalence of constipation of children in the IG (3.1%) was markedly lower (P<0.05) than that of children in the CG (13.3%) after treatment. In conclusion, the mixture of three probiotic strains given to children aged 1-3 years resulted in shorter durations of diarrhoea and hospitalisation and a higher percentage of improved children.
Antibiotic therapy may have important side effects. Guidelines recommend the administration of specific probiotics to reduce the risk of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea (AAD). The rates and determinants of antibiotics and co-prescription of probiotics in children remain poorly known in Asia-Pacific countries, which are very heterogenous in terms of economic development, health care organization and health policies. A survey among general practitioners (GPs) and paediatricians was performed in seven countries of the Asia-Pacific area (Australia, Japan, Indonesia, India, China, Singapore, and South Korea). Physicians completed an online questionnaire that explored their current habits and the determinants for prescribing antibiotics and probiotics. For the 731 physicians who completed the questionnaire (390 paediatricians and 341 GPs), 37% of all consultations for a child led to the prescription of antibiotics (ranging from 17% in Australia to 47% in India). A large majority of physicians (84%) agreed that antibiotics disrupted gut microbiota and considered probiotics an effective intervention to prevent AAD (68%). However, only 33% co-prescribed probiotics with antibiotics (ranging from 13% in Japan to 60% in South Korea). The main reasons for prescribing probiotics were previous episodes of AAD (61%), presence of diarrhoea (55%), prolonged antibiotic treatment (54%) or amoxicillin-davulanic acid therapy (54%). Although current local guidelines recommend the use of selected probiotics in children receiving antibiotics in Asia-Pacific area, the rates of antibiotics and probiotics prescription significantly vary among countries and are deeply affected by country-related cultural and organisational issues.
This study aimed to determine the impact of Lactobacillus plantarum PC170 concurrent with antibiotic treatment and/or during the recovery phase after antibiotic treatment on the body weight, faecal bacterial composition, short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) concentration, and splenic cytokine mRNA expression of mice. Orally administrated ceftriaxone quantitatively and significantly decreased body weight, faecal total bacteria, Akkermansia muciniphila, and Lactobacillus plantarum, and faecal SCFAs concentration. Ceftriaxone treatment also dramatically altered the faecal microbiota with an increased Chao1 index, decreased species diversities and Bacteroidetes, and more Firmicutes and Proteobacteria. After ceftriaxone intervention, these changes all gradually started to recover. However, faecal microbiota diversities were still totally different from control by significantly increased alpha- and beta-diversities. Bacteroidetes all flourished and became dominant during the recovery process. However, mice treated with PC170 both in parallel with and after ceftriaxone treatment encouraged more Bacteroidetes, Verrucomicrobia, and Actinobacteria, and the diversity by which to make faecal microbiota was very much closer to control. Furthermore, the expression of splenic pro-inflammatory cytokine tumour necrosis factor-alpha mRNA in mice supplemented with PC170 during the recovery phase was significantly lower than natural recovery. These results indicated that antibiotics, such as ceftriaxone, even with short-term intervention, could dramatically damage the structure of gut microbiota and their abilities to produce SCFAs with loss of body weight. Although such damages could be partly recovered with the cessation of antibiotics, the implication of antibiotics to gut microbiota might remain even after antibiotic treatment. The selected strain PC170 might be a potential probiotic because of its contributions in helping the host animal to remodel or stabilise its gut microbiome and enhancing the anti-inflammatory response as protection from the side effects of antibiotic therapy when it was administered in parallel with and after antibiotic treatment.
Vestibular migraine (VM) has emerged as one of the major vestibular syndromes. Although probiotics have exhibited beneficial effects on migraine headache, its effect on VM is not clear. This trial aimed to investigate the treatment efficacy of the probiotic Lactobacillus casei Shirota (LcS) on symptoms of VM. 247 VM patients were enrolled, of which 204 eligible patients receiving either LcS or placebo on a daily basis completed the 4 month study. They were re-visited at 2 and 4 months after study initiation to assess treatment outcomes. The primary endpoints were vestibular symptoms, evaluated by the number of vertiginous attacks during the past week, the Vertigo Severity Score (VSS), and Dizziness Handicap Inventory (DHI) scores. The secondary endpoints were anxiety and depressive symptoms, evaluated using Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) scores. Efficacy of LcS over placebo was not obvious at 2 month follow-up. At 4 month follow-up, while both LcS and placebo groups of VM patients displayed alleviated symptoms, the extents of the improvements were significantly better in LcS group than those of placebo group, with regard to vestibular symptoms using DHI and VSS, as well as anxiety and depressive symptoms using BAI and BDI. Although placebo effect cannot be ignored in intervention for VM patients, the probiotic LcS still exhibits considerable efficacy against VM symptoms over a 4 month study period, supporting further clinical study of a larger and more diverse cohort.
Clostridium tyrobutyricum shows probiotic properties and can affect the composition of gut mic robiota and regulate the intestinal immune system. Compared with other probiotics, this spore-producing bacterium shows unparalleled advantages in commercial production. In addition to being resistant to extreme living environments for extended periods, its endophytic spores are implicated in inhibiting cancer cell growth. We speculated that C. tyrobutyricum spores can also promote gut health, which mean it can maintain intestinal homeostasis. To date, the beneficial effects of C. tyrobutyricum spores on gut health have not been reported. In this study, a Spo0A-overexpressing C. tyrobutyricum strain was developed to increase spore production, and its probiotic effects on the gut were assessed. Compared with the wild-type, the engineered strain showed significantly increased sporulation rates. Mice administered with the engineered strain exhibited enhanced intestinal villi and the villus height/crypt depth ratio, weight gain and improved Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes ratio to facilitate intestinal homeostasis. This study demonstrated for the first time that enhanced spore production in C. tyrobutyricum can improve intestinal homeostasis, which is advantageous for its commercial application in food and pharmaceutical industry.
Phthalates are contaminants widely distributed in the food-chain, and they are considered as important environmental oestrogens in our lives. In the present study, eight strains of lactic acid bacteria were isolated for their ability to adsorb di-n-butyl-phthalate (DBP), and one of the strains, Lactobacillus plantarum strain P1, was selected for more detailed analyses of its phthalate adsorption capacity in vitro. This study also evaluated the in vivo protective effects of strain P1 against DBP toxicity in rats. Sixteen rats were divided into four groups, and animals received by oral gavage every other day for a period of one month saline with or without strain P1 at 2x10(11) cfu/kg followed by maize oil with or without DBP (50 mg/kg). Strain P1 could adsorb more DBP than saline alone, and the concentration of mono-n-butyl phthalate in urine was decreased in animals receiving P1. Furthermore, oestrogenic effects of the different treatments were assessed through counting of sperm and observation of testis, and strain P1 could protect the sexual organs of male rats. Our results suggested that P1 is effective against phthalate toxicity due to its ability to adsorb DBP in vivo and could be considered as a new dietary therapeutic strategy against environmental phtalate toxicity.
As a member of photosynthetic bacteria, Rhodopseudomonas palustris, which has extraordinary metabolic versatility, has been applied as one of potential probiotics in feed industry. To explore whether R. palustris can increase rumen microbial viability and thus improve microbial fermentation, a 2x5 factorial experiment was conducted to evaluate the effect of R. palustris at dose rates of 0, 1.3, 2.6, 3.9, 5.2x 10(6) cfu/ml on ruminal fermentation of two representative total mixed rations (HY, a ration for high-yield (>32 kg/d) lactating cows; LY, a ration for low-yield (<25 kg/d) lactating cows). After a 48 h in vitro rumen incubation, both rations resulted in different fermentation characteristics. The HY in comparison with LY group presented greater in vitro dry matter disappearance (IVDMD), cumulative gas production (GP(48)) and total volatile fatty acids (VFA, P<0.01). Increasing R. palustris addition linearly increased IVDMD (P<0.01) and GP(48) (P<0.05), and the IVDMD increment in response to R. palustris addition was greater in LY than HY group (6.4% vs 1.4%). Meanwhile, increasing R. palustris addition also linearly enhanced microbial protein synthesis and increased total VFA production (P<0.01), especially in LY group (up to 21.5% and 24.5% respectively). Unchanged acetate and declined propionate in molar percentage were observed in response to the R. palustris addition. Furthermore, increasing R. palustris addition altered fermentation gas composition in which molar O-2 proportion in headspace of fermentation system was linearly reduced by 46.1% in LY and 32.9% in HY group, respectively (P< 0.01), and methane production in both ration groups was enhanced by 1.9-4.1% (P=0.02). In summary, the R. palustris addition exhibited high potential for promoting the growth of rumen microorganism and enhancing microbial fermentation towards non-glucogenic energy supply by maintaining an anaerobic environment to microbe equilibrium.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive disease and one of the most common forms of neurodegenerative disorders. Emerging evidence is supporting the use of various strategies that modulate gut microbiota to exert neurological and psychological changes. This includes the utilisation of probiotics as a natural and dietary intervention for brain health. Here, we showed the potential AD-reversal effects of Lactobacillus probiotics through feeding to our Drosophila melanogaster AD model The administration of Lactobacillus strains was able to rescue the rough eye phenotype (REP) seen in AD-induced Drosophila, with a more prominent effect observed upon the administration of Lactobacillus plantartun DR7 (DR7). Furthermore, we analysed the gut microbiota of the AD-induced Drosophila and found elevated levels of Wolbachia. The administration of DR7 restored the gut microbiota diversity of AD-induced Drosophila with a significant reduction in Wolbachia's relative abundance, accompanied by an increase of Stenotrophomonas and Acetobacter. Through functional predictive analyses, Wolbachia was predicted to be positively correlated with neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson's, Huntington's and Alzheimer's diseases, while Stenotrophomonas was negatively correlated with these neurodegenerative disorders. Altogether, our data exhibited DR7's ability to ameliorate the AD effects in our AD-induced Drosophila. Thus, we propose that Wolbachia be used as a potential biomarker for AD.
Fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21), a metabolism regulator, has an important effect on metabolic diseases, such as obesity and diabetes. It is also expressed in mice, and the murine source has high homology with human FGF21. Recently, it has been extensively studied and has become a potential drug target for the treatment of metabolic diseases. As it is a protein-based hormone, FGF21 cannot be easily and quickly absorbed into the blood through oral administration. Moreover, it has a 0-2 h half-life in vivo, as shown in a previous study, thus its efficacy lasts for a short period of time when used to treat metabolic diseases, limiting its clinical applications. To avoid these limitations, we used Lactococcus lactis, a food-grade bacterium, as the host to express FGF21. It could be used successfully for the expression and long-term effect of FGF21 in vivo. Instead of antibiotic resistance genes, the LacF gene was used as a selection marker in the NZ3900/PNZ8149 expression system, which is safe and could reduce the antibiotic resistance crisis. In this study, we a constructed human FGF21 expressing L. lactis strain and administered it to Db/Db mice by gavage. Compared with the control group, the body weight of mice in the experimental group was significantly reduced, and the overall homeostasis was improved in mice treated with human FGF21. Moreover, the activity of brown adipose tissue was enhanced. These results revealed that oral administration of FGF21 through heterologous expression in L. lactis appears to be an effective approach for its clinical application.
Individuals in a community who developed irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) after major floods have significant mental health impairment. We aimed to determine if Bifidobacterium infantis M-63 was effective in improving symptoms, psychology and quality of life measures in flood-affected individuals with IBS and if the improvement was mediated by gut microbiota changes. Design was non-randomised, open-label, controlled before-and-after. Of 53 participants, 20 with IBS were given B. infantis M-63 (1x10(9) cfu/sachet/day) for three months and 33 were controls. IBS symptom severity scale, hospital anxiety and depression scale, SF-36 Questionnaire, hydrogen breath testing for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth and stools for 16S rRNA metagenomic analysis were performed before and after intervention. 11 of 20 who were given probiotics (M-63) and 20 of 33 controls completed study as per-protocol. Mental well-being was improved with M-63 vs controls for full analysis (P=0.03) and per-protocol (P=0.01) populations. Within-group differences were observed for anxiety and bodily pain (both P=0.04) in the M-63 per-protocol population. Lower ratio of Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes was observed with M-63 vs controls (P=0.01) and the lower ratio was correlated with higher post-intervention mental score (P=0.04). B. infantis M-63 is probably effective in improving mental health of victims who developed IBS after floods and this is maybe due to restoration of microbial balance and the gut-brain axis. However, our conclusion must be interpreted within the context of limited sample size.
Recombinant lactic acid bacteria (LAB), especially Lactococcus lactis, have been genetically engineered to express heterogeneous invasion proteins, such as the fibronectin binding protein A (FnBPA) from Staphylococcus aureus, to increase the invasion ability of the host strains, indicating a promising approach for DNA vaccine delivery. The presence of FnBPA has been also shown to be an adjuvant for co-delivered antigens, however, the underlying mechanisms are still not clear. To explore the above underlying mechanisms, in this study, we constructed a novel Lactobacillus plantarum strain with surface displayed FnBPA, which could significantly improve the adhesion and invasion ratios of L. plantarum strain on a porcine intestinal epithelial cell line (IPEC-J2) about two-fold compared with the empty vector. At the same time, the presence of FnBPA significantly stimulated the differentiation of bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs) and increased the secretion of interleukin (IL)-6 and mRNA level of IL-6 gene, which were proved by flow cytometry, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and quantitative reverse transcription PCR (qRT-PCR). With regard to in vivo study, the presence of FnBPA significantly stimulated the differentiation of DCs in the Peyer's patch (PP) and the percentages of IL-4(+) and IL-17A(+) T helper (Th) cells of splenocytes in flow cytometry assay. In consistent with these results, the levels of IL-4 and IL-17A in serum as measured via ELISA also increased in mice treated with FnBPA(+) L. plantarum. Finally, the FnBPA strain increased the production of B220(+) B cells in mesenteric lymph node (MLN) and PP and the levels of FnBPA-specific IgG and sIgA antibodies, indicating the its possible application in vaccine field. This study demonstrated that the invasive L. plantarum with surface displayed FnBPA could modulate host immune response by stimulating the differentiation of DCs and Th cells which could possibly be responsive for the adjuvant effects of FnBPA.
Intestinal mucositis is a frequent side effect in cancer patients who are treated with chemotherapy. There are no effective treatment strategies to date. To find a novel way to alleviate mucositis, the effects of selenium-enriched Bifidobacterium longum (Se-B. longum) in preventing irinotecan (CPT-11)-induced intestinal mucositis in a mouse model were investigated. We tested the ability of Se-B. longum (Se 0.6 mg/kg, 5x10(8) cfu/mice) to reduce small intestinal mucositis induced by CPT-11 (75 mg/kg, daily) injected intraperitoneally for four consecutive days in mice. Se-B. longum significantly decreased mortality induced by CPT-11 from 71.4% to 16.7%. CPT-11 induced body weight loss, which was alleviated by preventative and simultaneous administration of Se-B. longum. Se-B. longum significantly decreased the severity of diarrhoea from 11 to 4% compared to the CPT-11 group. Inflammation, including intestinal shortening and upregulation of tumour necrosis factor-a and interleukin-1 beta induced by CPT-11, were prevented by Se-B. longum. Se-B. longum is effective in preventing small intestinal mucositis induced by CPT-11 and therefore has potential to be used clinically by cancer patients.
Human inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and experimental colitis models in mice are associated with shifts in gut microbiota composition, and several probiotics are widely used to improve gastrointestinal health. Here, we investigated whether the probiotic Bacillus licheniformis Zhengchangsheng (R) (BL) ameliorates dextran sulphate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis through alteration of the gut microbiota. Experimental colitis was induced in BALB/C mice by dissolving 3% DSS in their drinking water for 7 days, which were gavaged with 0.2 ml phosphate-buffered saline or BL (3x10(7) cfu/ml) once a day. Administration of BL attenuated several effects of DSS-induced colitis, including weight loss, increased disease activity index, and disrupted intestinal barrier integrity. In addition, BL mitigated the reduction in faecal microbiota richness in DSS treated mice. Interestingly, BL was found to reduce the elevated circulating endotoxin level in mice with colitis by modulating the microbial composition of the microbiota, and this was highly associated with a proportional decrease in gut Bacteroidetes. Our results demonstrate that BL can attenuate DSS-induced colitis and provide valuable insight into microbiota interactions during IBD.
The improving-intestinal-microbial-balance properties of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) are well known. Thus, LAB could play a vital role in the pathogenesis of liver diseases. In the present study, 107 LAB strains were isolated from Mongolian camel milk products and identified to species, then screened for their probiotic properties. As a result, we identified 71 Lactobacillus bacteria belonging to 9 different species, and 36 Lactococcus bacteria belonging to 8 different species. Among them, six strains of LAB with strong tolerance and adhesion ability were further studied for their protective effect on acute liver injury induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS)/D-galactosamine (D-GalN). These six strains of LAB were fed to mice for 7 weeks, and on the final day of the experiment, LPS/D-GalN were used to induce acute liver injury. After challenging, the degree of liver pathological changes, secretion of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) in serum and liver, and the expression of tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha and interleukin (IL)-6 in the liver and intestines were observed and quantified. The results showed that the degree of liver pathological changes in mice fed with the six LAB strains were relieved to varying degrees compared with the LPS/D-GalN-induced model group, and the expressions of AST, ALT, IL-6, and TNF-alpha factor were also significantly decreased. Moreover, the expression levels of these factors in mice pretreated with Lactobacillus paracasei subsp. paracasei WXD5 were significantly decreased compared with other experimental groups. This suggests the probiotic potential and pharmacological value of L. paracasei subsp. paracasei as a liver injury inhibitor in the intervention of inflammation-based liver disease.
Bacillus coagulans is a probiotic bacterium that produces spores. Due to its excellent stability, it has been widely used in medicine, food and chemical industry. Recent studies have shown that B. coagulans has therapeutic effects on intestinal diseases, such as acute diarrhoea, irritable bowel syndrome, antibiotic-related diarrhoea, constipation and colitis via modulation of the microbiota composition, host immunity and metabolism. Additionally, toxicological experiments and a large number of clinical observations have showed that B. coagulans is safe and has no effect of mutagenicity, teratogenicity or genotoxicity. This review summarises the latest advances associated with B. coagulans, from its biological features, probable action mechanisms, toxicity, and medical applications.