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Br J Nutr. 2014 Jan 28;111(2):279-86. doi: 10.1017/S0007114513002237. Epub 2013 Oct 8.

Short-term, daily intake of yogurt containing Bifidobacterium animalis ssp. lactis Bf-6 (LMG 24384) does not affect colonic transit time in women.

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Department of Family Medicine, Georgetown University Medical Center, 240 Building D, 4000 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20007-2145, USA.
Department of Mathematics, UPMC, St. Margaret Hospital, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, DC, USA.
Cargill, Inc., Wayzata, MN, USA.
Department of Food Science, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA, USA.


The present study investigated the effect of Bifidobacterium animalis ssp. lactis Bf-6 (LMG 24 384) (Bf-6)-supplemented yogurt on colonic transit time (CTT). A triple-blinded, randomised, placebo-controlled, two-period cross-over trial was conducted with sixty-eight women with a self-reported history of straining during bowel movements or hard or lumpy stools in the past 2 years. As per regulatory requirements for probiotic studies, eligible women were generally healthy and not actively constipated at the time of enrolment. Participants consumed both Bf-6 and placebo yogurts for 14 d each in a randomised order, with a 6-week washout period between the treatments. The primary outcome, CTT, was assessed via Sitz marker X-rays. The average CTT was 42·1 h for the active period and 43·3 h for the control period (mean difference 1·2 h, 95 % CI - 4·9, 7·4). Since the statistical tests for the cross-over study implied that the mean CTT for the active and control periods in period 2 were biased, the standard protocol suggests examining the results of only period 1 as a traditional randomised controlled trial. This showed that the mean CTT was 35·2 h for the active period v. 52·9 h for the control period (P= 0·015). Bootstrapping demonstrated that both the mean and median differences remained significant (P= 0·016 and P= 0·045, respectively). Few adverse events were noted, with no differences among the active and control periods. The paired analysis showed no differences between the active and control periods during the cross-over trial. Further trials should be conducted in populations with underlying problems associated with disordered transit to determine the potential value of probiotic supplementation more accurately.

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