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In vitro functional and immunomodulatory properties of the Lactobacillus helveticus MIMLh5-Streptococcus salivarius ST3 association that are relevant to the development of a pharyngeal probiotic product.
The use of proper bacterial strains as probiotics for the pharyngeal mucosa is a potential prophylactic strategy for upper respiratory tract infections. In this context, we characterized in vitro the functional and immunomodulatory properties of the strains Lactobacillus helveticus MIMLh5 and Streptococcus salivarius ST3 that were selected during previous investigations as promising pharyngeal probiotics. In this study, we demonstrated in vitro that strains MIMLh5 and ST3, alone and in combination, can efficiently adhere to pharyngeal epithelial cells, antagonize Streptococcus pyogenes, and modulate host innate immunity by inducing potentially protective effects. In particular, we found that the strains MIMLh5 and ST3 activate U937 human macrophages by significantly inducing the expression of the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α). Nonetheless, the induction of the anti-inflammatory interleukin-10 (IL-10) by MIMLh5 or ST3 was never lower than that of TNF-α, suggesting that these bacteria can potentially exert a regulatory rather than a proinflammatory effect. We also found that the strains MIMLh5 and ST3 induce cyclooxygenase 2 (COX-2) expression and demonstrated that toll-like receptor 2 (TLR-2) participates in the recognition of the strains MIMLh5 and ST3 by U937 cells. Finally, we observed that these microorganisms grow efficiently when cocultured in milk, suggesting that the preparation of a milk-based fermented product containing both MIMLh5 and ST3 can be a practical solution for the administration of these bacteria. In conclusion, we propose the combined use of L. helveticus MIMLh5 and S. salivarius ST3 for the preparation of novel products that display probiotic properties for the pharyngeal mucosa.
Toll-Like Receptor 2
Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
Pub Type(s)Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't