Research is investigating the role of probiotics in modulating the gut microbiome and their influence on gut health.
A recent review of probiotic supplementation in healthy adults suggests there is little evidence of an effect in healthy people (see: Do probiotics have a beneficial effect on healthy adults?).
However, in people with existing health conditions, there is research supporting a modest ability for specific probiotic strains to alleviate some disease symptoms such as gastrointestinal problems. The key is that many of the benefits appear to be strain-specific, so it is necessary to do a bit of research beforehand to make sure you get the right strains.
Explore the research articles listed below to learn more about these insights and uncover further links between the gut microbiome and probiotics.
Science blogs and digests
Dual studies reveal probiotics offer no help to children with stomach virus
Probiotics are only beneficial when your gut barrier is healthy, study finds
Health Check: should healthy people take probiotic supplements?
Probiotics for bipolar disorder mania
Probiotics can protect the skeletons of older women
Human gut study questions probiotic health benefits
Probiotic found in yogurt can reverse depression symptoms
Do probiotics have a beneficial effect on healthy adults?
Impact on gut microbiota of fermented milk product containing probiotics revealed by new technology
Daily doses of a new probiotic reduces 'bad' and total cholesterol
Bagga, D., et al.
Probiotics drive gut microbiome triggering emotional brain signatures.
Gut Microbes 9(6): 486-496. (2018). Doi: 10.1080/19490976.2018.1460015
Ciorba, M. A.
A gastroenterologist’s guide to probiotics.
Clinical gastroenterology and hepatology 10(9): 960-968. (2012). Doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2012.03.024
Dickerson, F., et al.
Adjunctive probiotic microorganisms to prevent rehospitalization in patients with acute mania: a randomized controlled trial.
Bipolar Disorders 20(7): 614-621. (2018). Doi: 10.1111/bdi.12652
Freedman, S.B., et al.
Multicenter trial of a combination probiotic for children with gastroenteritis.
The New England Journal of Medicine 379: 2015-2026. (2018). Doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1802597
Hill, D., Ross, R. P., Arendt, E. & Stanton, C..
Chapter 4 - Microbiology of yogurt and bio-yogurts containing probiotics and prebiotics.
In Shah, N. (Ed.), Yogurt in Health and Disease Prevention (pp. 69-85). London, UK: Academic Press. (2017). Doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-805134-4.00004-3
Nilsson, A.G., et al.
Lactobacillus reuteri reduces bone loss in older women with low bone mineral density: a randomized, placebo‐controlled, double‐blind, clinical trial.
Journal of Internal Medicine 284(3): 307-317. (2018). Doi: 10.1111/joim.12805
Quin, C., et al.
Probiotic supplementation and associated infant gut microbiome and health: a cautionary retrospective clinical comparison.
Scientific Reports 8, 8283 (2018). Doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-26423-3
Sanders, M. E.
Probiotics and microbiota composition.
BMC Med. 14, 82 (2016). Doi: 10.1186/s12916-016-0629-z
Sanders, M. E., Benson, A., Lebeer, S., Merenstein, D. J. & Klaenhammer, T. R.
Shared mechanisms among probiotic taxa: implications for general probiotic claims.
Curr. Opin. Biotechnol. 49: 207-216. (2018). Doi: 10.1016/j.copbio.2017.09.007
Schnadower, D., et al.
Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG versus placebo for acute gastroenteritis in children.
The New England Journal of Medicine 379: 2002-2014. (2018). Doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1802598
Suez, J., et al.
Post-antibiotic gut mucosal microbiome reconstitution is impaired by probiotics and improved by autologous FMT.
Cell 174(6): 1406-1423. (2018). Doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.08.047
Tu M-Y, Chen H-L, Tung Y-T, Kao C-C, Hu F-C, Chen C-M.
Short-term effects of kefir-fermented milk consumption on bone mineral density and bone metabolism in a randomized clinical trial of osteoporotic patients.
PLoS ONE 10(12), e0144231 (2015). Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0144231
Veiga, P. et al.
Changes of the human gut microbiome induced by a fermented milk product.
Sci. Rep. 4, 6328 (2014). Doi: 10.1038/srep06328
Zmora, N., et al.
Personalized gut mucosal colonization resistance to empiric probiotics is associated with unique host and microbiome features.
Cell 174(6): 1388-1405. (2018). Doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2018.08.041
Khalesi, Saman, et al.
A review of probiotic supplementation in healthy adults: helpful or hype?.
European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 73: 24–37. (2019) . Doi: 10.1038/s41430-018-0135-9