As a medical doctor specializing in medical microbiology, my scientific interest isthe patient-related importance of the gastrointestinal microflora. This concerns thedefense function of the microflora, the conditions that lead to distortion of this"win-win" arrangement, the medical consequences of such distortions, and a simplifiedclassification of microorganisms that can cause infectious disease.
Microecology of Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria Inhabiting the Digestive Tract: Essential Knowledge for Successful Probiotic Research
The past decade has seen a somewhat amazingly increased interest in the use ofintestinal species of lactic acid-producing bacteria in the production of milk products.Lactobacillus acidophilus and Bifidobacterium species are now common componentsof yogurts that are retailed throughout the world.
Modulation of the Intestinal Microflora by Probiotics
Although the history of fermented milks goes back many hundreds of years toprebiblical times, the real study of the health benefits derived from consumption ofsoured milks begins with the work of Metchnikoff.
Role of Bacterial Adherence in the Establishment of the Normal Intestinal Microflora
Probiotics are defined as "a live microbial feed supplement which beneficially affectsthe host animal by improving its intestinal microbial balance." Examples ofdesired effects include competitive exclusion of pathogenic microorganisms andaltered metabolism of the intestinal flora
Establishment of a Normal Intestinal Microflora in the Newborn Infant
The intestinal microflora of an adult person is a complex ecosystem, estimated toharbor about 400 different bacterial species. Anaerobic bacteria outnumber aerobicand facultative bacteria by a factor of 100 to 1000.
All free-living macroorganisms, including humans, are normally born without anymicroorganisms. Shortly after birth, microbial colonization begins. At first, withplenty of space and nutrients, microbes with a high multiplication rate may predominate.
Continuous-Flow Culture Models of Intestinal Microecology
Helicobacter pylori has markedly changed our views of host-microbial interactionsin general and the pathogenesis of peptic ulcer disease in particular. The discoveryby Marshall and Warren (1) illustrates the seemingly endless ability of prokaryoticlife forms to adapt to their environment.
Microbial Receptor Analogs in Human Milk: Structural and Functional Aspects
It is well known that human milk has not only nutritive value but also many otherphysiological functions, including the supply of prebiotics. With regard to its biologicalfunctions, it has recently been shown that the carbohydrate moiety of glycoconjugatesmay play an important role (1).
The human intestinal tract is colonized by a huge number of microbes (around 1014).These grow predominately in the region of the large bowel (1). These microbesconsist of more than 400 different species and subspecies and are either nonpathogenicor pathogenic to the host.
Immunological and Molecular Assays for the Detection of Intestinal Pathogens: Application to Diagnosis, Epidemiology, and Therapeutic Monitoring
Diarrheal diseases remain important causes of morbidity and mortality in many areasof the world. They can cause health problems in every age group; however, theirmajor effects are most evident in infants and young children (1).
Concept of Balanced Colonic Microbiota, Prebiotics, and Synbiotics
The complicated task of the gut mucosa in accepting nutrients at the same time asprotecting against infectious agents is reflected in the size of its immune system.There are more lymphoid cells in the gut than in the spleen, peripheral lymph glands,and blood together.
The mucosal surface of the gastrointestinal tract forms an important organ of hostdefense. In addition to its principal physiological function—digestion and absorptionof nutrients—the intestinal mucosa provides a protective interface between the internalenvironment and the constant challenge from antigens in food and microorganismsfrom the external environment.
Probiotics in Alimentation: Clinical Evidence for Their Enhancement of the Natural Immunity of the Gut
Probiotics are commonly defined as viable microorganisms (yeasts or bacteria) thathave a beneficial effect on the health of the host when they are ingested. They areused in drug formulations, but also in foods, especially in fermented dairy products.
The deliberate addition of microorganisms to the diet of humans dates back to ancienttimes. Initially, these were probably ingested in the form of fermented milk products,where the bacteria were used to preserve dairy foods.
Mechanisms of Breastfeeding Protection Against Infantile Infectious Diarrhea
Extensive clinical and epidemiological studies have shown that breastfeeding iseffective at reducing the risks of infantile diarrhea and other infectious diseases(1-3). Acute infectious diarrhea continues to be one of the most common causesof infant morbidity and mortality in developing countries (4).