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Special Issue "Probiotics and Prebiotics"

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A special issue of Pharmaceuticals (ISSN 1424-8247).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2012)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Yasuhiro Koga

Laboratory for Infectious Diseases, Tokai University School of Medicine, Isehara, Kanagawa 259-1193, Japan
Phone: +81-463-93-1121, Ext. 2591
Interests: probiotics; prebiotics; bifidobacteria; gnotobiology; helicobacter pylori; stomach; atopic dermatitis; gut-brain axis

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Probiotics are defined as live non-pathogenic bacteria that beneficially affect the host by influencing the microbiota of the digestive tract. Prebiotics, that are usually saccharides and fiber, represent a source of energy being metabolized by the intestinal and probiotic microbiota. In the last several decades, a rapid enlargement in the use of probiotics/prebiotics occurred for prevention and treatment of diseases in medicine, such as diarrhea caused by certain pathogenic bacteria and viruses, Helicobacter pylori infection, and allergy etc. Rigid evidence supporting the efficacy of probiotics/prebiotics in such clinical uses and mechanical studies are now needed in order to firmly establish them in the modern medicine.

Prof. Dr. Yasuhiro Koga
Guest Editor

Keywords

  • probiotics
  • prebiotics
  • prevention of diarrhea caused by pathogenic bacteria and viruses
  • Helicobacter pylori infection and complications
  • inflammatory bowel diseases
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • mucosal immunity
  • allergy
  • hyperlipidemia
  • gut-brain axis

Related Special Issue

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Removal of Cholera Toxin from Aqueous Solution by Probiotic Bacteria
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(6), 665-673; doi:10.3390/ph5060665
Received: 7 May 2012 / Revised: 13 June 2012 / Accepted: 15 June 2012 / Published: 19 June 2012
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (205 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cholera remains a serious health problem, especially in developing countries where basic hygiene standards are not met. The symptoms of cholera are caused by cholera toxin, an enterotoxin, which is produced by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. We have recently shown that [...] Read more.
Cholera remains a serious health problem, especially in developing countries where basic hygiene standards are not met. The symptoms of cholera are caused by cholera toxin, an enterotoxin, which is produced by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae. We have recently shown that human probiotic bacteria are capable of removing cyanobacterial toxins from aqueous solutions. In the present study we investigate the ability of the human probiotic bacteria, Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain GG (ATCC 53103) and Bifidobacterium longum 46 (DSM 14583), to remove cholera toxin from solution in vitro. Lactobacillus rhamnosus strain GG and Bifidobacterium longum 46 were able to remove 68% and 59% of cholera toxin from aqueous solutions during 18 h of incubation at 37 °C, respectively. The effect was dependent on bacterial concentration and L. rhamnosus GG was more effective at lower bacterial concentrations. No significant effect on cholera toxin concentration was observed when nonviable bacteria or bacterial supernatant was used. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)
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Open AccessArticle Biochemical Traits, Survival and Biological Properties of the Probiotic Lactobacillus plantarum Grown in the Presence of Prebiotic Inulin and Pectin as Energy Source
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(5), 481-492; doi:10.3390/ph5050481
Received: 11 April 2012 / Revised: 9 May 2012 / Accepted: 11 May 2012 / Published: 15 May 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (228 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The viability of the probiotic strain Lactobacillus plantarum subsp. plantarum, after its passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices, was evaluated as function of its pre-growth in a medium containing the known prebiotics pectin or inulin, and was compared to glucose [...] Read more.
The viability of the probiotic strain Lactobacillus plantarum subsp. plantarum, after its passage through simulated gastric and pancreatic juices, was evaluated as function of its pre-growth in a medium containing the known prebiotics pectin or inulin, and was compared to glucose used as control. The presence of pectin or inulin did not markedly affect the growth (10.07 log10 colony forming units/mL and 10.28 log10 colony forming units/mL for pectin and inulin respectively versus 10.42 log10 colony forming units/mL obtained for glucose). Pectin and inulin, in contrast to glucose, induced cell stress resistance against gastrointestinal juices (D log101.5 and 2.4 colony forming units/mL respectively, versus D log10 4.0 for glucose). The data were corroborated by the analysis of the protein pattern following stress treatments which, in the case of microbial cells grown with glucose, revealed a more marked protein degradation after the double passage through simulated gastric and intestinal juices. Inulin stimulated the production of the relevant healthy bio-molecule butyrate, which amount was 30% higher respect of growth in the presence of glucose. Inulin and pectin improved cell DPPH scavenging activity, and an impressive hydrophobicity (35.28% and 34.81%, respectively) was observed with respect to the microbial growth in presence of glucose (3.39%). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)
Open AccessArticle Probiotic Ferulic Acid Esterase Active Lactobacillus fermentum NCIMB 5221 APA Microcapsules for Oral Delivery: Preparation and in Vitro Characterization
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(2), 236-248; doi:10.3390/ph5020236
Received: 23 December 2011 / Revised: 3 February 2012 / Accepted: 10 February 2012 / Published: 16 February 2012
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (726 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Probiotics possess potential therapeutic and preventative effects for various diseases and metabolic disorders. One important limitation for the oral delivery of probiotics is the harsh conditions of the upper gastrointestinal tract (GIT) which challenge bacterial viability and activity. One proposed method to [...] Read more.
Probiotics possess potential therapeutic and preventative effects for various diseases and metabolic disorders. One important limitation for the oral delivery of probiotics is the harsh conditions of the upper gastrointestinal tract (GIT) which challenge bacterial viability and activity. One proposed method to surpass this obstacle is the use of microencapsulation to improve the delivery of bacterial cells to the lower GIT. The aim of this study is to use alginate-poly-L-lysine-alginate (APA) microcapsules to encapsulate Lactobacillus fermentum NCIMB 5221 and characterize its enzymatic activity and viability through a simulated GIT. This specific strain, in previous research, was characterized for its inherent ferulic acid esterase (FAE) activity which could prove beneficial in the development of a therapeutic for the treatment and prevention of cancers and metabolic disorders. Our findings demonstrate that the APA microcapsule does not slow the mass transfer of substrate into and that of the FA product out of the microcapsule, while also not impairing bacterial cell viability. The use of simulated gastrointestinal conditions led to a significant 2.5 log difference in viability between the free (1.10 × 104 ± 1.00 × 103 cfu/mL) and the microencapsulated (5.50 × 106 ± 1.00 × 105 cfu/mL) L. fermentum NCIMB 5221 following exposure. The work presented here suggests that APA microencapsulation can be used as an effective oral delivery method for L. fermentum NCIMB 5221, a FAE-active probiotic strain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)

Review

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Open AccessReview Probiotics and Atopic Dermatitis in Children
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(7), 727-744; doi:10.3390/ph5070727
Received: 12 April 2012 / Revised: 26 June 2012 / Accepted: 29 June 2012 / Published: 6 July 2012
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (181 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is increasing interest in the potential beneficial role of probiotic supplementation in the prevention and treatment of atopic diseases in children. Probiotics are defined as ingested live microorganisms that, when administered in an adequate amount, confer a health benefit to the [...] Read more.
There is increasing interest in the potential beneficial role of probiotic supplementation in the prevention and treatment of atopic diseases in children. Probiotics are defined as ingested live microorganisms that, when administered in an adequate amount, confer a health benefit to the host. They are mainly represented by Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria. Several epidemiological data demonstrate that intestinal microflora of atopic children is different from the one of healthy children. Many literature data show that probiotics may modulate the intestinal microflora composition and may have immunomodulatory effect. Based on this hypothesis, probiotics are supposed to confer benefits to allergic diseases. Administration of probiotics when a natural population of indigenous intestinal bacteria is still developing could theoretically influence immune development by favoring the balance between Th1 and Th2 inflammatory responses. For this reason, some studies have evaluated the potential impact of probiotics supplementation in the prevention of atopic dermatitis, with contrasting results. Clinical improvement in immunoglobulin (Ig)E-sensitized (atopic) eczema following probiotic supplementation has been reported in some published studies and the therapeutic effects of probiotics on atopic dermatitis seemed to be encouraging. However, as far as the usefulness of probiotics as a prevention strategy is concerned, results are still inconclusive. In fact, the clinical benefits of probiotic therapy depend upon numerous factors, such as the type of bacteria, dosing regimen, delivery method and other underlying host factors, such as age and diet. More studies are still needed to definitively prove the role of probiotics in the treatment of allergic eczema. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)
Open AccessReview The Potential Therapeutic Efficacy of Lactobacillus GG in Children with Food Allergies
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(6), 655-664; doi:10.3390/ph5060655
Received: 16 May 2012 / Revised: 4 June 2012 / Accepted: 6 June 2012 / Published: 19 June 2012
Cited by 8 | PDF Full-text (570 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Food allergy (FA) continues to be a growing health concern for infants living in Western countries. The long-term prognosis for the majority of affected infants is good, with 80–90% naturally acquiring tolerance by the age of five years. However, recent studies suggest [...] Read more.
Food allergy (FA) continues to be a growing health concern for infants living in Western countries. The long-term prognosis for the majority of affected infants is good, with 80–90% naturally acquiring tolerance by the age of five years. However, recent studies suggest that the natural history of FA is changing, with an increasing persistence until later ages. The pathogenesis of FA as well as oral tolerance is complex and not completely known, although numerous studies implicate gut-associated immunity and enteric microflora, and it has been suggested that an altered composition of intestinal microflora results in an unbalanced local and systemic immune response to food allergens. In addition, there are qualitative and quantitative differences in the composition of gut microbiota between patients affected by FA and healthy infants. These findings prompted the concept that specific beneficial bacteria from the human intestinal microflora, designated probiotics, could restore intestinal homeostasis and prevent or alleviate allergy, at least in part by interacting with the intestinal immune cells. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)
Open AccessReview Influence of Maternal Bifidobacteria on the Development of Gut Bifidobacteria in Infants
Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(6), 629-642; doi:10.3390/ph5060629
Received: 1 April 2012 / Revised: 29 May 2012 / Accepted: 5 June 2012 / Published: 18 June 2012
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (73 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Intestinal microbiota plays an important role in human health by influencing metabolic activities that result in the creation of energy and absorbable nutrients, a barrier to the colonization of pathogens, and stimulation of the immune system. The development of fecal microbiota in [...] Read more.
Intestinal microbiota plays an important role in human health by influencing metabolic activities that result in the creation of energy and absorbable nutrients, a barrier to the colonization of pathogens, and stimulation of the immune system. The development of fecal microbiota in neonates is crucial because those bacteria are the first to colonize the sterile intestine of the neonates and, thus, have a significant effect on the host. Initial colonization is also relevant to the final composition of the permanent microbiota in adults. Bifidobacteria are predominant in the fecal microbiota of infants, and, therefore, they are important to an understanding of how commensal bifidobacteria is established in the intestine of infants. While the mother’s bifidobacteria are considered to significantly influence the infant’s bifidobacteria, it is not clear whether a specific bifidobacterial strain transmits vertically from mother to infant and what factors of the mother before delivery influence the establishment of intestinal bifidobacteria in infants. This review focuses on the impact of maternal bifidobacteria on the development of gut bifidobacteria in the infant and suggests that there is cumulative evidence regarding bifidobacterial transfer from the maternal gut or breast milk to the infant gut. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Probiotics and Prebiotics)

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