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Sci Rep. 2017 Jun 6;7(1):2883. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-02889-5.

The anti-cholesterolaemic effect of a consortium of probiotics: An acute study in C57BL/6J mice.

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Cultech Limited, Unit 2 Christchurch Road, Baglan Industrial Park, Port Talbot, SA12 7BZ, United Kingdom.
Cultech Limited, Unit 2 Christchurch Road, Baglan Industrial Park, Port Talbot, SA12 7BZ, United Kingdom.
Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, Sir Martin Evans Building, Museum Avenue, Cardiff, CF14 3AX, United Kingdom.
Centre for Digestive and Gut Health, Imperial College London, London, SW7 2AZ, United Kingdom.
Division of Computational and Systems Medicine, Department of Surgery and Cancer, Faculty of Medicine, Imperial College London, SW7 2AZ, London, United Kingdom.
Division of Infection and Immunity, Henry Wellcome Building, Cardiff University, Cardiff, CF14 4XN, United Kingdom.


Hypercholesterolaemia is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and it has been found that some probiotic bacteria possess cholesterol-lowering capabilities. In this study, the ability of the Lab4 probiotic consortium to hydrolyse bile salts, assimilate cholesterol and regulate cholesterol transport by polarised Caco-2 enterocytes was demonstrated. Furthermore, in wild-type C57BL/6J mice fed a high fat diet, 2-weeks supplementation with Lab4 probiotic consortium plus Lactobacillus plantarum CUL66 resulted in significant reductions in plasma total cholesterol levels and suppression of diet-induced weight gain. No changes in plasma levels of very low-density lipoprotein/low-density lipoprotein, high-density lipoprotein, triglycerides, cytokines or bile acids were observed. Increased amounts of total and unconjugated bile acids in the faeces of the probiotic-fed mice, together with modulation of hepatic small heterodimer partner and cholesterol-7α-hydroxylase mRNA expression, implicates bile salt hydrolase activity as a potential mechanism of action. In summary, this study demonstrates the cholesterol-lowering efficacy of short-term feeding of the Lab4 probiotic consortium plus L. plantarum CUL66 in wild-type mice and supports further assessment in human trials.

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