Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

C. difficile colonization accompanied by changes in gut microbiota: Study hints at probiotics as treatment

Date:
April 23, 2011
Source:
American Society for Microbiology
Summary:
Asymptomatic colonization by Clostridium difficile, absent the use of antibiotics, is common in infants and when it happens changes occur in the composition of the gut microbiota, according to new research.

Asymptomatic colonization by Clostridium difficile, absent the use of antibiotics, is common in infants and when it happens changes occur in the composition of the gut microbiota, according to research published in the March 2011 issue of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology.

The adult human gut is an ecosystem containing several pounds of bacteria, including hundreds of species and more than 100 trillion (100,000,000,000,000) individuals. A healthy microbial ecosystem protects the host against Clostridium difficile, which frequently colonizes the gut after its ecological balance has been disrupted by broad spectrum antibiotics, says Anne Collignon, of the University Paris Sud, Chatenay-Malabry, France.

Collignon and her colleagues examined the bacterial populations from fecal samples taken from 53 infants, 27 of them negative and 26 positive for C. difficile. Using a variety of analytic methods, her team showed that the C. difficile-negative infants' GI tracts contained the species, Bifidobacterium longum, which was absent from the C. difficile-positive infants, while the latter contained other species not present in the non-colonized guts, including Klebsiella pneumoniae. "We believe that this colonization is linked to an encounter with C. difficile spores, which are frequent in the environment, and a permissive microbiota," says Collignon.

"To reconstitute the ecological balance of the microbiota, and with that, the "barrier" effect, seems a very efficient way to combat C. difficile infections," says Collignon. "Our results suggest that Bifidobacterium species, which are used as probiotics, can participate in that barrier effect against C. difficile. But proof is necessary, for example, in gnotoxenic animal models (germ-free animals challenged with specific bacteria)." But she notes that another team of investigators has shown similar results in elderly people. "It is well known that following use of broad-spectrum antibiotics, the gram positive species decrease dramatically, and the bacteroides increase," she says. "Our study gives some clues to the microbiota composition allowing C. difficile colonization," she concludes in the paper.

Clostridium difficile is the most common cause of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and pseudomembranous colitis in adults, and infections are on the rise. Morbidity and mortality are high, and patients who are treated frequently relapse, as spores persist in the gut. Reconstituting the microbial ecology, with its barrier effect "seems a very efficient way to combat C. difficile infections," says Collignon, and recent studies suggest that this can be accomplished with probiotics and fecal transplantation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Microbiology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. C. Rousseau, F. Levenez, C. Fouqueray, J. Dore, A. Collignon, P. Lepage. Clostridium difficile Colonization in Early Infancy Is Accompanied by Changes in Intestinal Microbiota Composition. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 2010; 49 (3): 858 DOI: 10.1128/JCM.01507-10

Cite This Page:

American Society for Microbiology. "C. difficile colonization accompanied by changes in gut microbiota: Study hints at probiotics as treatment." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419214849.htm>.
American Society for Microbiology. (2011, April 23). C. difficile colonization accompanied by changes in gut microbiota: Study hints at probiotics as treatment. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419214849.htm
American Society for Microbiology. "C. difficile colonization accompanied by changes in gut microbiota: Study hints at probiotics as treatment." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110419214849.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

Residents Vaccinated as Haiti Fights Cholera Epidemic

AFP (Sep. 18, 2014) Haitians receive the second dose of the vaccine against cholera as part of the UN's vaccination campaign. Duration: 00:34 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Artificial Sweetener Could Promote Diabetes

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) Doctors once thought artificial sweeteners lacked the health risks of sugar, but a new study says they can impact blood sugar levels the same way. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

Ebola Vaccine Trial Gets Underway at Oxford University

AFP (Sep. 17, 2014) A healthy British volunteer is to become the first person to receive a new vaccine for the Ebola virus after US President Barack Obama called for action against the epidemic and warned it was "spiralling out of control." Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Obesity Rates Steady Even As Americans' Waistlines Expand

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) Researchers are puzzled as to why obesity rates remain relatively stable as average waistlines continue to expand. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins