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Probiotics, infection and immunity.
Curr Opin Infect Dis 2002; 15(5):501-6CO

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW

Taking live bacteria by mouth to improve health (probiotics) is not intuitively rational yet it is a practice with a long history. As interest in the effects on health of the intestinal flora has developed, along with major advances in the technology for studying it, so has come a new interest in establishing the true benefits of probiotic therapy. This review summarizes the most recent contributions to this rapidly developing area.

RECENT FINDINGS

Probiotic bacteria, mainly bifidobacteria and lactobacilli for historical reasons, can prevent or ameliorate some diseases. Many empirical studies have been done, but work to develop the ideal characteristics of probiotics lags behind. Current literature covers survival of probiotics in the gut, mucosal adherence, antibacterial/pathogen mechanisms, effects on immune function and clinical studies.

SUMMARY

Probiotic bacteria are effective in preventing and reducing the severity of acute diarrhoea in children. They are also useful in antibiotic associated diarrhoea but not for elimination of Helicobacter pylori. In inflammatory bowel disease, especially ulcerative colitis, probiotics offer a safe alternative to current therapy. Probiotics have been used to prevent urogenital tract infection with benefit and, perhaps more intriguingly, to reduce atopy in children. Probiotics do not invariably work and study of mechanisms is urgently needed.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Molecular and Cellular Pathology, University of Dundee, UK. g.t.macfarlane@dundee.ac.ukNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Review

Language

eng

PubMed ID

12686883

Citation

Macfarlane, George T., and John H. Cummings. "Probiotics, Infection and Immunity." Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases, vol. 15, no. 5, 2002, pp. 501-6.
Macfarlane GT, Cummings JH. Probiotics, infection and immunity. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2002;15(5):501-6.
Macfarlane, G. T., & Cummings, J. H. (2002). Probiotics, infection and immunity. Current Opinion in Infectious Diseases, 15(5), pp. 501-6.
Macfarlane GT, Cummings JH. Probiotics, Infection and Immunity. Curr Opin Infect Dis. 2002;15(5):501-6. PubMed PMID: 12686883.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Probiotics, infection and immunity. AU - Macfarlane,George T, AU - Cummings,John H, PY - 2003/4/11/pubmed PY - 2003/5/8/medline PY - 2003/4/11/entrez SP - 501 EP - 6 JF - Current opinion in infectious diseases JO - Curr. Opin. Infect. Dis. VL - 15 IS - 5 N2 - PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Taking live bacteria by mouth to improve health (probiotics) is not intuitively rational yet it is a practice with a long history. As interest in the effects on health of the intestinal flora has developed, along with major advances in the technology for studying it, so has come a new interest in establishing the true benefits of probiotic therapy. This review summarizes the most recent contributions to this rapidly developing area. RECENT FINDINGS: Probiotic bacteria, mainly bifidobacteria and lactobacilli for historical reasons, can prevent or ameliorate some diseases. Many empirical studies have been done, but work to develop the ideal characteristics of probiotics lags behind. Current literature covers survival of probiotics in the gut, mucosal adherence, antibacterial/pathogen mechanisms, effects on immune function and clinical studies. SUMMARY: Probiotic bacteria are effective in preventing and reducing the severity of acute diarrhoea in children. They are also useful in antibiotic associated diarrhoea but not for elimination of Helicobacter pylori. In inflammatory bowel disease, especially ulcerative colitis, probiotics offer a safe alternative to current therapy. Probiotics have been used to prevent urogenital tract infection with benefit and, perhaps more intriguingly, to reduce atopy in children. Probiotics do not invariably work and study of mechanisms is urgently needed. SN - 0951-7375 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/12686883/Probiotics_infection_and_immunity_ L2 - http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/00001432-200210000-00008 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -