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Biocell. 2000 Dec;24(3):223-32.

Gut mucosal immunostimulation by lactic acid bacteria.

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Cátedra Inmunología, Instituto de Microbiología, Facultad de Bioquímica, Química y Farmacia, Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Argentina.


The beneficial properties of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) on human health have been frequently demonstrated. The interaction of LAB with the lymphoid cells associated to the gut to activate the mucosal immune system and the mechanisms by which they can exert an adjuvant effect is still unclear, as well as if this property is common for all the LAB. We studied the influence of the oral administration of different geneous of LAB such as Lactobacillus casei, L. acidophilus, L. rhamnosus, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, L. plantarum, Lactococcus lactis and Streptococcus thermophilus. We determined if the LAB assayed were able to stimulate the specific, the non-specific immune response (inflammatory response), or both. We demonstrated that all the bacteria assayed were able to increase the number of IgA producing cells associated to the lamina propria of small intestine. This effect was dose dependent. The increase in IgA+ producing cells was not always correlated with an increase in the CD4+ T cell number, indicating that some LAB assayed only induced clonal expansion of B cells triggered to produce IgA. Most of them, induced an increase in the number of cells involved in the inflammatory immune response. CD8+ T cell were diminished or not affected, with exception of L. plantarum that induced an increase at low dose. This fact would mean that LAB are unable to induce cytotoxicity mechanisms. We demonstrated the importance in the selection of LAB to be used as gut mucosal adjuvant. The different behaviours observed among them on the gut mucosal immune response, specially those that induce inflammatory immune response, show that not all the LAB can be used as oral adjuvant and that the beneficial effect of them can not generalized to genous or specie. The immunoadjuvant capacity would be a property of the strain assayed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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