Animal Microflora and Probiotics for UTIs and Eczema

Honeybee landing on milkthistle02
Even the honeybee has its own specialised microflora.
Beneficial bacteria beat UTI bugs and prevent eczema in young children. In the animal world, the microflora of the carp is explored as well as that of the honeybee.

Probiotics for UTIs: More Isn’t Better

Pathogens of the urinary tract infection (UTI) can be inhibited through the use of beneficial bacteria strains. However, researchers didn’t know if mixes of different strains would be more effective than single strains. In a side-by-side comparison experiment, scientists from the University of Reading in the United Kingdom, found that more wasn’t necessarily better. Lactobacillus acidophilus and L. fermentum could be just as effective as commercial preparations containing 3-14 different strains at inhibiting UTI pathogens.

Microbiome of the Carp Revealed

The Gibel or Prussian carp inhabits a wide-range of freshwater areas throughout Europe, North America and Asia. Using pyrosequencing, scientists from China were able to determine the bacteria diversity found in the intestines of the fish. The bacterial community was found to be very similar to that found in the sediment of the areas where the fish lived. However, bacteria were found that were also derived from food, indicating that feed bacteria also influence the gut community.

I’m a Bee-derived Lactic Acid Bacterium

Every creature has an associated microflora, and this is also true for honeybees. As they consume diets rich in fructose, their microflora is heavily populated by fructophilic lactic acid bacteria (FLAB). Researchers from Finland analyzing bee flora found that all of the isolated strains exhibited fructophilic characteristics. Some also had antimicrobial properties. Differences were also noted by the bacterial composition between adult bees and larva. The scientists speculate that health of bees could be improved with probiotic treatments.

Long-term Eczema Prevention with Early Probiotics

There is evidence that eczema can be prevented in children when probiotics are given to the mother during pregnancy and to the infant after birth. In a continuation of a study performed in New Zealand, it’s now known that this protection lasts until at least 6 years of age. The scientists originally found that treatment with L. rhamnosus HN001 significantly reduced the prevalence of eczema at both two and four years of age. In this new study, the protection is now seen to significantly extend to 6 years of age.