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Antiviral Res. 2007 Sep;75(3):266-74. Epub 2007 Apr 23.

Interactions of macrophages with probiotic bacteria lead to increased antiviral response against vesicular stomatitis virus.

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University of Maribor, Faculty of Agriculture, Vrbanska c.30, 2000 Maribor, Slovenia.


Macrophages are an important cellular component of the innate immune system and are normally rapidly recruited and/or activated at the site of virus infection. They can participate in the antiviral response by killing infected cells, by producing antiviral cytokines such as nitric oxide and by producing chemokines and immunoregulatory cytokines that enable the adaptive immune response to recognize infected cells and perform antiviral effector functions. Probiotics, as a part of the normal gut intestinal flora, are important in supporting a functional yet balanced immune system. Improving our understanding of their role in the activation of macrophages and their stimulation of proinflammatory cytokine production in early viral infection was the main goal of this study. Our in vitro model study showed that probiotic bacteria, either from the species Lactobacillus or Bifidobacteria have the ability to decrease viral infection by establishing the antiviral state in macrophages, by production of NO and inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin 6 and interferon-gamma. These effects correlated with the mitochondrial activity of infected macrophages, therefore, the measurements of mitochondrial dehydrogenases activity could be implied as the first indicator of potential inhibitory effects of the probiotics on virus replication. The interactions between probiotic bacteria, macrophages and vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), markedly depended on the bacterial strain studied.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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