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Vicariotto F.,Gynaecology Unit | Del Piano M.,Gastroenterology Unit | Mogna L.,Biolab Research Srl | Mogna G.,Probiotical SpA
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND:: Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) is the second most common cause of vaginitis after bacterial vaginosis, and it is diagnosed in up to 40% of women with vaginal complaints in the primary care setting. Among Candida spp., Candida albicans is the most common infectious agent. The treatment of choice for uncomplicated VVC is achieved with single-dose or short-course therapy in over 90% of cases. Several topical and oral drugs are available, without evidence for superiority of any agent or route of administration. In any case, most classic treatments are unable to significantly offer a protection against possible recurrences. In recent years, probiotics are emerging as a new strategy to counteract VVC. In fact, they are well known for their ability to lower intravaginal pH, thus establishing a barrier effect against many types of yeasts. Some strains are also able to exert additional and more focused antagonistic activities mediated by specific molecules such as hydrogen peroxide and bacteriocins. For example, Lactobacillus fermentum LF5 (CNCM I-789) was successfully tested in 4 human trials involving a total of 340 women reporting VVC at enrollment. In any case, the way used to deliver probiotics to the vaginal environment represents a crucial point. The aim of this work was to first select 1 or more probiotic strains in vitro with an antagonistic activity on Candida yeasts and then to perform an in vivo human pilot study using an association of the most promising and active bacteria. METHODS:: For this purpose, 2 probiotic strains Probiotical S.p.A (Italy) were selected based on their strong in vitro inhibition activity toward 4 particular Candida species, namely C. albicans, Candida glabrata, Candida parapsilosis, and Candida krusei and subsequently tested in a human intervention pilot trial involving 30 women with VVC. The probiotics used, L. fermentum LF10 (DSM 19187) and Lactobacillus acidophilus LA02 (DSM 21717), were administered by means of slow release effervescent vaginal tablets (ActiCand 30 product). The main endpoint was the assessment of the establishment and maintenance of a barrier effect against Candida yeasts in women suffering from VVC. Thirty female subjects who were diagnosed with VVC by both microscopic examination and yeast culture were enrolled in the study and directed to apply a vaginal tablet once a day for 7 consecutive nights, followed by 1 tablet every 3 nights for a further 3-week application (acute phase) and, finally, 1 tablet per week to maintain a long-term vaginal colonization against possible recurrences. A medical examination of each patient was performed at enrollment (d0), at the end of the first 4 weeks of treatment (d28), and at the end of the second month of relapse prevention (d56). The visual and microscopic examination was always accompanied by microbiological analyses of vaginal swabs to assess the presence of Candida. A statistical comparison was made between d28, or d56, and d0, and between d56 and d28 to quantify the efficacy against possible recurrences. RESULTS:: The administration of the product ActiCand 30 was able to significantly solve Candida yeast symptoms after 28 days in 26 patients out of 30 (corresponding to 86.6%, P<0.001). At the end of the second month, recurrences were recorded, albeit not particularly serious, in only 3 out of 26 patients (11.5%, P=0.083) who were found to have fully healed at the end of the first month of treatment. This is a further confirmation of the long-term barrier effect exerted by the product. CONCLUSIONS:: VVC has a very high incidence as 70% to 75% of women report at least 1 episode during the life. Many treatments are currently available but, despite a relatively high effectiveness in the relief of symptoms typically associated with acute infections, they are generally unable to offer a long-term protective barrier against possible recurrences. This study demonstrated the ability of ActiCand 30 to not only solve Candida infections in a very high percentage of women, but also to exert a long-term physiological defense due to the colonization of vaginal microbiota and adhesion of the mucosa to the epithelial cells. The special formulation of ActiCand 30, consisting of slow release effervescent vaginal tablets, is able to mediate 2 types of barrier effects, the first represented by the formation of an anaerobic environment due to the release of CO2 and the second guaranteed by the colonization and adhesion to the vaginal epithelium of the 2 probiotics L. fermentum LF10 and L. acidophilus LA02. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Del Piano M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Anderloni A.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Balzarini M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Ballare M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | And 9 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND:: Gastroesophageal reflux disease is a very widespread condition. In Europe, it is estimated that about 175 million people suffer from this disease and have to chronically take drugs to increase gastric pH. The proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as omeprazole, lansoprazole, and esomeprazole are the most widely used drug typology in this regard. However, the inhibition of normal gastric acid secretion has important side effects, the most important being bacterial overgrowth in the stomach and duodenum with a concentration of >10 viable cells/mL. As a major consequence of this, many harmful or even pathogenic bacteria contained in some foods could survive the gastric transit and colonize either the stomach itself, the duodenum, or the gut, where they could establish acute and even chronic infections with unavoidable consequences for the host's health. In other words, the "gastric barrier effect" is strongly reduced or even disrupted. To date, there are no real strategies to deal with this widespread, although still relatively little known, problem. The aim of this study was to confirm the gastric bacterial overgrowth in long-term PPI consumers and to assess the efficacy of some probiotic bacteria, belonging to both genera Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, in the reduction of gastric and duodenal bacterial overgrowth, therefore partially restoring the gastric barrier effect against foodborne pathogenic bacteria. METHODS:: For this purpose, probiotics with a strong demonstrated inhibitory activity on gram-negative bacteria, such as Escherichia coli, were tested in a human intervention trial involving a total of 30 subjects treated with PPIs for either 3 to 12 consecutive months (short-term) or >12 consecutive months (long-term). An additional 10 subjects not taking PPIs were enrolled and used as a control group representing the general population. Four selected probiotics Probiotical SpA (Novara, Italy), namely Lactobacillus rhamnosus LR06 (DSM 21981), Lactobacillus pentosus LPS01 (DSM 21980), Lactobacillus plantarum LP01 (LMG P-21021), and Lactobacillus delbrueckii subsp. delbrueckii LDD01 (DSM 22106) were administered for 10 days to 10 subjects treated with PPIs for >12 months (group B). In the 60 mg formulation, N-acetylcysteine was included as well in light of its well-known mechanical effects on bacterial biofilms. Gastroscopies were performed at the beginning of the study (d0) in all the groups (A, B, C, and D) and after 10 days (d10) in group B only; that is, at the end of probiotics intake. The total viable cells and total Lactobacillus were quantified in gastric juice and duodenal brushing material from all subjects. The results were compared among all the groups and with the control subjects (group D) to confirm the bacterial overgrowth. A comparison was made also between d0 and d10 in group B to quantify the efficacy of the 4 probiotics administered for 10 days. Fecal samples were collected from all groups at d0, including subjects not treated with PPIs, and in group B only at d10. Specific bacterial classes, namely enterococci, total coliforms, E. coli, molds, and yeasts were quantified in all fecal specimens. RESULTS:: The results collected confirmed the strong bacterial overgrowth in the stomach and duodenum of people treated with PPIs compared with subjects with a normal intragastric acidity. It is also worth noting that the bacterial cell counts in subjects who underwent a long-term treatment with a PPI were greater than the results from subjects taking these drugs for 3 to 12 months. The intake of 4 specific probiotic strains with a marked antagonistic activity towards 5 E. coli bacteria, including the enterohaemorrhagic O157:H7 strain, and an effective amount of N-acetylcysteine (NAC) was able to significantly reduce bacterial overgrowth in long-term PPI-treated subjects. Total lactobacilli represented the major percentage of bacterial counts, thus demonstrating the ability of such bacteria to colonize the stomach and the duodenum, at least temporarily, and to consequently restore the gastric barrier effect. A significant decrease in fecal enterococci, total coliforms, E. coli, molds, and yeasts in subjects treated with PPIs was recorded at the end of probiotics supplementation (d10) compared with baseline (d0) in group B. This is a further confirmation of the barrier effect also exerted at the stomach level. CONCLUSIONS:: PPIs are the most widely sold and used drugs in the world. However, the chronic use of these pharmacological molecules exposes the subject to the risk of foodborne infections as most pathogens are able to survive the gastric transit in a condition of significantly decreased acidity. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


del Piano M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Carmagnola S.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Ballare M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Sartori M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | And 8 more authors.
Gut Microbes | Year: 2011

In a recent publication we assessed the kinetics of intestinal colonization by microencapsulated probiotic bacteria in comparison with the same strains given in an uncoated form. It is well known, in fact, that microencapsulation of pro-biotics with specific materials is able to confer a significant resistance to gastric juice, thus protecting the cells during the gastric and duodenal transit and enhancing the probiotic efficacy of supplementation. This was the first study comparing the colonization time of the same probiotic strains administered in coated and uncoated form. Here, we discuss additional in vitro data of resistance of these bacterial strains to gastric juice, human bile and pancreatic secretion and correlate this data with the results of in vivo gut colonization. © 2011 Landes Bioscience.


Mogna L.,Biolab Research Srl | Nicola S.,Biolab Research Srl | Pane M.,Biolab Research Srl | Lorenzini P.,Biolab Research Srl | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND:: Minerals, often referred to as micronutrients, are one of the 5 fundamental groups of nutrients needed to sustain life. Micronutrient malnutrition affects >50% of the worldwide population. In particular, zinc (Zn) deficiency is considered an emerging public health problem in India and in other developing countries. Selenium (Se) is another trace mineral essential for humans and animals. Dietary Se exists primarily as selenomethionine and selenocysteine. In addition, Se may be present in its inorganic form (selenite) in some vegetables. To increase the daily intake of these minerals, numerous food supplements containing different inorganic and organic forms of Zn or Se are commercially available. At any rate, it is quite well known that inorganic salts have a very low bioavailability. Organic salts, commonly based on gluconate, orotate, citrate, or other molecules, are characterized by a higher systemic effect. The innovative opportunity of using certain species of probiotics enriched with the 2 minerals could represent an interesting alternative to these preparations. Diet integration with bacteria able to internalize Zn and Se may embody a new application of probiotics. METHODS:: To overcome the difficulties of in vivo animal or human trials, in this work a cell culture model using Caco-2 cells in bicameral chambers (Transwell system) was developed and validated to quantify the bioavailability of some commercial forms of Se and Zn compared with the organic forms accumulated intracellularly by Lactobacillus buchneri Lb26 (DSM 16341) and Bifidobacterium lactis Bb1 (DSM 17850), respectively. RESULTS:: The experimental data collected demonstrated a significantly higher bioavailability of Se and Zn internalized by L. buchneri Lb26 (DSM 16341) and B. lactis Bb1 (DSM 17850), respectively, compared with the inorganic and even organic forms tested. In particular, the Se accumulated at the intracellular level by L. buchneri Lb26 proved to be 5.9, 9.4, and 65 times more absorbable than sodium selenite, seleno-L-methionine, and seleno-L-cysteine, respectively. In contrast, Zn internalized by B. lactis Bb1 showed an absorption that was >16 times higher by Caco-2 cells compared with zinc gluconate and a 31.5 times higher absorption compared with zinc sulfate. Most notably, Se and Zn internalized by the 2 probiotics studied are the only forms able to reach the Transwell basolateral compartment at a concentration higher than the concentration found in the apical compartment, therefore suggesting a considerably higher in vivo ability to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Both organic and inorganic forms of Se and Zn were predominantly found in the apical compartment, thus demonstrating their poor ability to diffuse into the cell and become bioavailable in all subcellular areas. CONCLUSIONS:: The opportunity of delivering minerals in a highly bioavailable form by means of a probiotic bacterium has not been deeply investigated to date. This is the first study reporting quantitative data on the bioavailability and percentage of absorption of minerals internalized by specific probiotics. The most noticeable aspect is the significantly higher absorption of both probiotic Se and Zn compared with their organic forms, with particular reference to seleno-L - methionine, seleno-L-cysteine, and zinc gluconate. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Mogna L.,Biolab Research Srl | Del Piano M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Deidda F.,Biolab Research Srl | Nicola S.,Biolab Research Srl | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND:: Lactobacilli and bifidobacteria are often associated with health-promoting effects. These live microorganisms, defined as probiotics, are commonly consumed as part of fermented foods, such as yoghurt and fermented milks, or as dietary supplements. Escherichia coli is a gram-negative, rod-shaped bacterium commonly found in the lower intestine of warm-blooded organisms. As a part of the normal gut microbiota, this microorganism colonizes the gastrointestinal tract of animals and humans within a few hours after birth. All E. coli strains can produce a wide variety of biogenic amines responsible for potentially harmful systemic intoxications. Enterohemorrhagic E. coli serotype O157:H7 is a pathotype of diarrhoeagenic strains with a large virulence plasmid pO157 able to produce 1 or more Shiga toxins. METHODS:: The overall aim of this study was to determine the inhibitory effects of different strains of probiotics on E. coli serotypes, including E. coli O157:H7 (CQ9485). In particular, the antagonistic activity of 4 Bifidobacterium strains (Probiotical SpA, Italy) and 16 lactic acid bacteria, more specifically 14 Lactobacillus spp. and 2 Streptococcus spp., was assessed against selected E. coli biotypes (ATCC 8739, ATCC 10536, ATCC 35218, and ATCC 25922). The diarrhoeagenic serotype O157:H7 was also tested. RESULTS:: The experimental data collected demonstrated an in vitro significant inhibitory effect of 6 Lactobacillus strains, namely L. rhamnosus LR04, L. rhamnosus LR06, L. plantarum LP01, L. plantarum LP02, L. pentosus LPS01, and L. delbrueckii subsp. delbrueckii LDD01, and 2 Bifidobacterium strains, B. breve BR03 and B. breve B632. The inhibiting extent was slightly different among these strains, with L. delbrueckii subsp. delbrueckii LDD01 showing the highest activity on E. coli O157:H7. CONCLUSIONS:: Most of the probiotics studied are able to antagonize the growth of the 5 strains of E. coli tested, including the O157:H7 biotype, well known for their characteristic to produce a wide variety of biogenic amines considered responsible for dangerous systemic intoxications. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Piano M.D.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Carmagnola S.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Ballare M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Balzarini M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | And 8 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2012

BACKGROUND:: Beneficial findings concerning probiotics are increasing day by day. However, one of the most important parameters able to significantly affect the probiotic value of a microorganism is its survival during the transit through the stomach and the duodenum. Some techniques may be applied that aim to improve this parameter, but microencapsulation of bacterial cells remains one of the most important. A recent study assessed the kinetics of intestinal colonization by a mixture of 2 probiotic strains, given either in a microencapsulated or in a traditional, uncoated form. METHODS:: A comparison between the intestinal colonization by associating 5 microencapsulated bacteria and the same uncoated strains was performed by a double-blind, randomized, cross-over study. The study (December 2007 to January 2009) involved 53 healthy volunteers. In particular, subjects were divided into 2 groups: group A (27 subjects) was given a mix of probiotic strains Probiotical S.p.A. (Novara, Italy), Lactobacillus acidophilus LA02 (DSM 21717), Lactobacillus rhamnosus LR04 (DSM 16605), L. rhamnosus GG, or LGG (ATCC 53103), L. rhamnosus LR06 (DSM 21981), and Bifidobacterium lactis BS01 (LMG P-21384) in an uncoated form, whereas group B (26 subjects) received the same strains microencapsulated with a gastroprotected material. The uncoated strains were administered at 5×10 cfu/strain/d (a total of 25×10 cfu/d) for 21 days, whereas the microencapsulated bacteria were given at 1×10 cfu/strain/d (a total of 5×10 cfu/d) for 21 days. At the end of the first period of supplementation with probiotics, a 3-week wash-out phase was included in the study setting. At the end of the wash-out period, the groups crossed over their treatment regimen; that is, group A was administered the microencapsulated bacteria and group B the uncoated bacteria. The administered quantities of each strain were the same as the first treatment. A quantitative evaluation of intestinal colonization by probiotics, either microencapsulated or uncoated, was undertaken by examining fecal samples at the beginning of the study (time 0), after 10 days and after 21 days of each treatment period. In particular, fecal total Lactobacilli, heterofermentative Lactobacilli, and total Bifidobacteria were quantified at each checkpoint. A genomic analysis of an appropriate number of colonies was performed to quantify individual L. rhamnosus strains among heterofermentative Lactobacilli. RESULTS:: A statistically significant increase in the fecal amounts of total Lactobacilli, heterofermentative Lactobacilli, and total Bifidobacteria was registered in both groups at the end of each supplementation period compared with d0 or d42 (group A: P=0.0002, P=0.0001, and P<0.0001 at d21, P=0.0060, P=0.0069, and P<0.0001 at d63 for total Lactobacilli, heterofermentative Lactobacilli, and Bifidobacteria, respectively; group B: P=0.0002, P=0.0006, and P<0.0001 at d21, P=0.0015, P=0.0016, and P<0.0001 at d63 for total Lactobacilli, heterofermentative Lactobacilli, and Bifidobacteria, respectively), confirming the ability of each strain in the administered composition to colonize the human gut, whether supplemented in a gastroprotected or in a traditional freeze-dried form. On the contrary, subjects receiving microencapsulated bacteria reported a kinetics of intestinal colonization that was entirely comparable with those who were given uncoated strains at a 5 times higher amount. CONCLUSIONS:: The microencapsulation technique used in this study is a valid approach aimed to significantly improve the survival of strains during gastroduodenal transit, thus enhancing their probiotic value and allowing the use of a 5 times lower amount. © 2012 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Del Piano M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Carmagnola S.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Andorno S.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | Pagliarulo M.,Maggiore della Carita Hospital | And 5 more authors.
Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology | Year: 2010

Background: Beneficial findings concerning probiotics are increasing day by day. However, one of the most important parameter which affects the probiotic activity of a microorganism is its survival during the gastroduodenal transit. Some microencapsulation techniques could be applied to bacterial cells to improve this parameter. Methods: A comparison between the intestinal colonization by microencapsulated bacteria and the same not microencapsulated strains has been conducted in a double blind, randomized, cross-over study. The study (April to July 2005) involved 44 healthy volunteers. In particular, participants were divided into 2 groups: group A (21 participants) received a mix of probiotic strains Lactobacillus plantarum LP01 (LMG P-21021) and Bifidobacterium breve BR03 (DSM 16604) in an uncoated form, group B (23 participants) was given the same strains microencapsulated with a gastroresistant material. The not microencapsulated strains were administered at 5*109 colony forming units/strain/d for 21 days, whereas the microencapsulated bacteria were given at 1*109 colony forming units/strain/d for 21 days. At the end of the first period of treatment with probiotics a 3 weeks washout phase has been included in the study protocol. At the end of the washout period the groups were crossed: in detail, group A had the microencapsulated and group B the uncoated bacteria. The administered amounts of each strain were the same as the first treatment. The quantitative evaluation of intestinal colonization by strains microencapsulated or not microencapsulated was made by fecal samples examination at the beginning of the clinical trial, after 10 and 21 days of each treatment period. In particular, fecal heterofermentative Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria have been counted. Results: A statistically significant increase in the fecal amounts of Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria was recorded in both groups at the end of each treatment compared with d0 or d42 (P<0.0001 and P<0.0001 at d21, P<0.0001 and P<0.0001 at d63 for Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria, respectively), confirming the ability of the 2 strains to colonize the human gut, either in a gastroprotected form or not. Participants treated with the microencapsulated bacteria reported a kinetics of intestinal colonization quite similar to participants who received not coated strains. Conclusions: Probiotics are able to exert many different beneficial effects on the human host. These effects are mediated by the number of viable cells which reach the gut. The microencapsulation techique used in this study is a valid strategy to significantly improve gastroresistance of strains, thus enhancing their probiotic activity and allowing the use of a 5 times lower amount. Copyright © 2010 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


PubMed | Biolab Research Srl
Type: | Journal: Journal of clinical gastroenterology | Year: 2012

Lactobacilli and bifidobacteria are often associated with health-promoting effects. These live microorganisms, defined as probiotics, are commonly consumed as part of fermented foods, such as yoghurt and fermented milks, or as dietary supplements. Escherichia coli is a gram-negative, rod-shaped bacterium commonly found in the lower intestine of warm-blooded organisms. As a part of the normal gut microbiota, this microorganism colonizes the gastrointestinal tract of animals and humans within a few hours after birth. All E. coli strains can produce a wide variety of biogenic amines responsible for potentially harmful systemic intoxications. Enterohemorrhagic E. coli serotype O157:H7 is a pathotype of diarrhoeagenic strains with a large virulence plasmid pO157 able to produce 1 or more Shiga toxins.The overall aim of this study was to determine the inhibitory effects of different strains of probiotics on E. coli serotypes, including E. coli O157:H7 (CQ9485). In particular, the antagonistic activity of 4 Bifidobacterium strains (Probiotical SpA, Italy) and 16 lactic acid bacteria, more specifically 14 Lactobacillus spp. and 2 Streptococcus spp., was assessed against selected E. coli biotypes (ATCC 8739, ATCC 10536, ATCC 35218, and ATCC 25922). The diarrhoeagenic serotype O157:H7 was also tested.The experimental data collected demonstrated an in vitro significant inhibitory effect of 6 Lactobacillus strains, namely L. rhamnosus LR04, L. rhamnosus LR06, L. plantarum LP01, L. plantarum LP02, L. pentosus LPS01, and L. delbrueckii subsp. delbrueckii LDD01, and 2 Bifidobacterium strains, B. breve BR03 and B. breve B632. The inhibiting extent was slightly different among these strains, with L. delbrueckii subsp. delbrueckii LDD01 showing the highest activity on E. coli O157:H7.Most of the probiotics studied are able to antagonize the growth of the 5 strains of E. coli tested, including the O157:H7 biotype, well known for their characteristic to produce a wide variety of biogenic amines considered responsible for dangerous systemic intoxications.


Minerals, often referred to as micronutrients, are one of the 5 fundamental groups of nutrients needed to sustain life. Micronutrient malnutrition affects >50% of the worldwide population. In particular, zinc (Zn) deficiency is considered an emerging public health problem in India and in other developing countries. Selenium (Se) is another trace mineral essential for humans and animals. Dietary Se exists primarily as selenomethionine and selenocysteine. In addition, Se may be present in its inorganic form (selenite) in some vegetables. To increase the daily intake of these minerals, numerous food supplements containing different inorganic and organic forms of Zn or Se are commercially available. At any rate, it is quite well known that inorganic salts have a very low bioavailability. Organic salts, commonly based on gluconate, orotate, citrate, or other molecules, are characterized by a higher systemic effect. The innovative opportunity of using certain species of probiotics enriched with the 2 minerals could represent an interesting alternative to these preparations. Diet integration with bacteria able to internalize Zn and Se may embody a new application of probiotics.To overcome the difficulties of in vivo animal or human trials, in this work a cell culture model using Caco-2 cells in bicameral chambers (Transwell system) was developed and validated to quantify the bioavailability of some commercial forms of Se and Zn compared with the organic forms accumulated intracellularly by Lactobacillus buchneri Lb26 (DSM 16341) and Bifidobacterium lactis Bb1 (DSM 17850), respectively.The experimental data collected demonstrated a significantly higher bioavailability of Se and Zn internalized by L. buchneri Lb26 (DSM 16341) and B. lactis Bb1 (DSM 17850), respectively, compared with the inorganic and even organic forms tested. In particular, the Se accumulated at the intracellular level by L. buchneri Lb26 proved to be 5.9, 9.4, and 65 times more absorbable than sodium selenite, seleno-L-methionine, and seleno-L-cysteine, respectively. In contrast, Zn internalized by B. lactis Bb1 showed an absorption that was >16 times higher by Caco-2 cells compared with zinc gluconate and a 31.5 times higher absorption compared with zinc sulfate. Most notably, Se and Zn internalized by the 2 probiotics studied are the only forms able to reach the Transwell basolateral compartment at a concentration higher than the concentration found in the apical compartment, therefore suggesting a considerably higher in vivo ability to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Both organic and inorganic forms of Se and Zn were predominantly found in the apical compartment, thus demonstrating their poor ability to diffuse into the cell and become bioavailable in all subcellular areas.The opportunity of delivering minerals in a highly bioavailable form by means of a probiotic bacterium has not been deeply investigated to date. This is the first study reporting quantitative data on the bioavailability and percentage of absorption of minerals internalized by specific probiotics. The most noticeable aspect is the significantly higher absorption of both probiotic Se and Zn compared with their organic forms, with particular reference to seleno-L-methionine, seleno-L-cysteine, and zinc gluconate.

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