Bifidobacterium infantis NLS Super Strain Reduces the Expression of α-Defensin-5, a Marker of Innate Immunity, in the Mucosa of Active Celiac Disease Patients

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Abstract

Background:

We have previously shown a reduction of gastrointestinal symptoms after the oral administration of Bifidobacterium infantis Natren Life Start super strain (NLS-SS) in untreated celiac disease (CD) patients. The symptomatic improvement was not associated with changes in intestinal permeability or serum levels of cytokines, chemokines, or growth factors. Therefore, we hypothesized that the beneficial symptomatic effect observed previously in patients with CD treated with B. infantis may be related to the modulation of innate immunity.

Goals:

To investigate the potential mechanisms of a probiotic B. infantis Natren Life Start super strain on the mucosal expression of innate immune markers in adult patients with active untreated CD compared with those treated with B. infantis×6 weeks and after 1 year of gluten-free diet (GFD).

Methods:

Numbers of macrophages and Paneth cells and α-defensin-5 expression were assessed by immunohistochemistry in duodenal biopsies.

Results:

We showed that GFD decreases duodenal macrophage counts in CD patients more effectively than B. infantis. In contrast, B. infantis decreases Paneth cell counts and expression of α-defensin-5 in CD (P<0.001).

Conclusions:

The results identify differential innate immune effects of treatment with B. infantis compared with 1 year of GFD. Further studies are needed to investigate synergistic effects of GFD and B. infantis supplementation in CD.

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