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Giuseppe CHISARI 1, Eleonora M. CHISARI 2, Carmela GRECO 3, Roberto MADEDDU 4, Massimo MOTTA 3, Clara G. CHISARI 5
1 Department of Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnology, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; 2 Department of Educational Sciences, University of Catania, Catania, Italy; 3 La Grande Senescenza, University of Catania, Cannizzaro Hospital, Catania, Italy; 4 Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sassari, Sassari, Italy; 5 Department of Neuroscience, University of Catania, Catania, Italy
BACKGROUND: The authors have studied the therapeutic effects of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium in combination with short chain fructo-oligosaccharides on the ocular surface of patients with dry eye syndrome.
METHODS: Forty subjects with dry eye syndrome (28 F-12 M mean age 51.5±5 years) with signs of discomfort and or dry eye (burning, foreign body sensation, dryness and itching) were examined at our study. All patients were divided by randomization into two groups: group A and group B (20 subjects each) (T1); subjects assigned to group A (control) were treated only with artificial tears (1 drop 3 times a day), while the subjects making up the group B (treated) have assumed a symbiotic (1 sachet of Proflora daily for a period of 30 days) (T2) simultaneously to the treatment with tear substitutes (1 drop 3 times daily). After a wash-out period of 5 days from the end of the treatment all the clinical parameters were assessed again (T3). They were taken into account some lacrimal tests and the aerobic and anaerobic bacteria present on the ocular surface, on the occasion of the first visit, and on the 5th day after the treatment. In particular, the following parameters were analyzed: Schirmer I (mm / 5 min); Schirmer II; tear film breakup time (BUT, sec) and conjunctival swab for the search of aerobic and anaerobic bacteria.
RESULTS: The data show a change of tear tests considered in our study, with the following values obtained respectively in group A (tear substitute) and group B (Sost, tear symbiotic +) before and after treatment. Schrimer Tests: 10.1±0.2 vs. 12.7±0.4 (P<0.001); Schrimer II Tests: 3.6±0.1 vs. 4.6±0.2 (P<0.001); BUT Test 4.1±0.3 vs. 6.5±0.2 (P<0.001). The bacteriological culture tests have shown an initial bacterial growth in 18 samples of group A (45% on the total of subjects in the study) and in group B after treatment with symbiotic have been reported a positive test value with bacterial growth equal to 14 samples (35% of the total of the trial subjects).
CONCLUSIONS: The study showed that food supplementation with synbiotic based Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus can be helpful in improving the condition of DED with a significant strengthening of the defense of the ocular surface systems. In fact these bacterial strains confirm a therapeutic role in the intestinal ecosystem restoration helping the overall welfare of guest.