The most exciting beneficial bacteria research in the last two weeks includes ways to avoid Giardia infection, improve probiotic transport and get beautiful skin!
Reduce Giarda Infection with Probiotics
Within the digestive system, a continual competition exists between friendly and harmful bacteria. Luckily, the friendly ones are, for the most part, in the majority. However, it was unknown if good microbiota could limit the activities of a well-known hiker’s enemy, the protozoan Giardia. Researchers in India tested this concept in mice by administering Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG) together with Giardia. The probiotics proved to be significantly helpful with increases of intestinal anti-oxidants and intestinal enzymes along with an improved intestinal structure. The researchers speculate that probiotics could be a plausible microbial therapy for Giarda.
Improved Probiotic Transport
A huge concern for probiotics suppliers is the survival of the microbes through the digestive tract, which is the home to acid secretions, bile and digestive enzymes – all capable of killing bacteria. Researchers in Italy use an “Oro-Gastro-Intestinal Tract Simulator” to find ways to improve survival. They found that survival was greatest and stress gene activation reduced when the model probiotic (Lactobacillus plantarum WCFS1) was sent in together with complex and/or nutrient matrices together with prebiotics. This is definitely something to consider when shopping for beneficial bacteria.
Clearer Heads for Diabetes Patients
Diabetes mellitus patients are known to have trouble with some brain functions like learning and memory. The question of the researchers from Iran was if probiotics could help alleviate some of these problems. Using a diabetic animal model, they fed the rats probiotic-supplemented food for two months. After this period, they tested the animals in a water maze and examined other brain-related and diabetic parameters. Probiotic treatment helped reduce glucose levels and considerably improved the memory and brain function of the diabetic rats.
Good Skin for Those with Bowel Disorders
A Japanese team at the Yakult Central Institute for Microbiological Research investigated the role of probiotics on the skin. Using a combination of surveys, animals experiments and several studies in humans, they found evidence that gut dysfunction can lead to dry skin. Apparently, metabolites from gut bacteria from injured and leaky guts can collect in the circulation, and, eventually, end up collecting in the skin. These metabolites harm the skin by interfering with skin cell development. Probiotic use, in at least healthy individuals, appeared to help reduce the metabolites in the skin as well as prevent dryness. They found success using Yakult and the prebiotic, galacto-oligosaccharides (GOS).
- Bove P, Russo P, Capozzi V, Gallone A, Spano G, Fiocco D. Lactobacillus plantarum passage through an oro-gastro-intestinal tract simulator: Carrier matrix effect and transcriptional analysis of genes associated to stress and probiosis. Microbiol Res. 2013 Jul 19;168(6):351-9.
- Davari S, Talaei SA, Alaei H, Salami M. Probiotics treatment improves diabetes-induced impairment of synaptic activity and cognitive function: Behavioral and electrophysiological proofs for microbiome-gut-brain axis. Neuroscience. 2013 Jun 14;240:287-96.
- Goyal N, Rishi P, Shukla G. Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG antagonizes Giardia intestinalis induced oxidative stress and intestinal disaccharidases: an experimental study.World J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2013 Jun;29(6):1049-57.
- Miyazaki K, Masuoka N, Kano M, Iizuka R. Bifidobacterium fermented milk and galacto-oligosaccharides lead to improved skin health by decreasing phenols production by gut microbiota. Benef Microbes. 2013 May 17:1-8.