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Nutrients 2013, 5(6), 1869-1912; doi:10.3390/nu5061869
Review

Probiotics, Prebiotics and Immunomodulation of Gut Mucosal Defences: Homeostasis and Immunopathology

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Received: 5 March 2013; in revised form: 8 May 2013 / Accepted: 9 May 2013 / Published: 29 May 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrients and Immune Function)
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Abstract: Probiotics are beneficial microbes that confer a realistic health benefit on the host, which in combination with prebiotics, (indigestible dietary fibre/carbohydrate), also confer a health benefit on the host via products resulting from anaerobic fermentation. There is a growing body of evidence documenting the immune-modulatory ability of probiotic bacteria, it is therefore reasonable to suggest that this is potentiated via a combination of prebiotics and probiotics as a symbiotic mix. The need for probiotic formulations has been appreciated for the health benefits in “topping up your good bacteria” or indeed in an attempt to normalise the dysbiotic microbiota associated with immunopathology. This review will focus on the immunomodulatory role of probiotics and prebiotics on the cells, molecules and immune responses in the gut mucosae, from epithelial barrier to priming of adaptive responses by antigen presenting cells: immune fate decision—tolerance or activation? Modulation of normal homeostatic mechanisms, coupled with findings from probiotic and prebiotic delivery in pathological studies, will highlight the role for these xenobiotics in dysbiosis associated with immunopathology in the context of inflammatory bowel disease, colorectal cancer and hypersensitivity.
Keywords: probiotics; prebiotics; synbiotics; immunomodulation; tolerance; activation; cytokines; inflammatory bowel disease; cancer; hypersensitivity probiotics; prebiotics; synbiotics; immunomodulation; tolerance; activation; cytokines; inflammatory bowel disease; cancer; hypersensitivity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Hardy, H.; Harris, J.; Lyon, E.; Beal, J.; Foey, A.D. Probiotics, Prebiotics and Immunomodulation of Gut Mucosal Defences: Homeostasis and Immunopathology. Nutrients 2013, 5, 1869-1912.

AMA Style

Hardy H, Harris J, Lyon E, Beal J, Foey AD. Probiotics, Prebiotics and Immunomodulation of Gut Mucosal Defences: Homeostasis and Immunopathology. Nutrients. 2013; 5(6):1869-1912.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Hardy, Holly; Harris, Jennifer; Lyon, Eleanor; Beal, Jane; Foey, Andrew D. 2013. "Probiotics, Prebiotics and Immunomodulation of Gut Mucosal Defences: Homeostasis and Immunopathology." Nutrients 5, no. 6: 1869-1912.



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