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Pig study with probiotics may benefit humans

Irish scientists report that a combination of five probiotic strains may reduce food poisoning by Salmonella, if results of their pig study can be translated to humans.

The new research, carried out by scientists of University College, Cork, divided 15 weaned pigs and fed them milk supplemented with a mixture of five Lactobacillus probiotic strains (two strains of Lactobacillus murinus and one strain each of Lactobacillus salivarius subsp. salivarius, Lactobacillus pentosus and Pediococcus pentosaceous), or placebo (regular milk) for 30 days.

After six days of the probiotics, the pigs were given an oral dose of Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium. The health and microbiology of the faeces were monitored for 23 days.

Study results

The pigs receiving probiotics showed reduced incidence, severity, and duration of diarrhoea as well as significantly lower numbers of Salmonella in faecal samples 15 days post-infection, reported the researchers. The probiotic milk group also gained more weight than the control pigs, they said.

Although the potential of the probiotic strains are there, further research is needed, particularly on whether similar positive results are obtainable in human subjects.

Related folder:
• AllAbout Probiotics

Related website:
• University College, Cork

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