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Minerva Gastroenterologica e Dietologica 2009 September;55(3):237-72

Copyright © 2009 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English, Italian

Gastroenteric pathology and probiotics: from myth to scientific evidence. Current aspects

Caramia G.

Unit of Pediatrics and Neonatology, G. Salesi Specialized Hospital for Mothers and Children, Ancona, Italy


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Starting from Metchnikoff’s theory of cell-mediated immunity and work on lactobacillus over 100 years ago, more and more applications for probiotics have been developed. Research into the health properties of probiotics has focused primarily on two areas: the interaction between intestinal microflora and enterocytes and the immune system and the use of probiotic products in the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases in adults and children. This review examines recent studies on the clinical use of monostrain and multistrain probiotic products in gastroenterology. The most widely studied strains are lactobacilli and yeasts, specifically, Lacto-bacillus rhamnosus GG and Saccharomices boulardii; the gastrointestinal disorders most commonly treated with probiotics are inflammatory bowel disease and dysbiosis, both of which clinically manifest as diarrhea.

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