Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Probiotic worm treatment may improve symptoms of colitis by restoring gut bacteria to healthy state

Date:
November 15, 2012
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
A new study on monkeys with chronic diarrhea that were treated by microscopic parasite worm (helminth) eggs has provided insights on how this form of therapy may heal the intestine. This condition in monkeys is similar to the inflammatory bowel diseases that affects up to 1.4 million Americans.

A new study on monkeys with chronic diarrhea that were treated by microscopic parasite worm (helminth) eggs has provided insights on how this form of therapy may heal the intestine. This condition in monkeys is similar to the inflammatory bowel diseases that affects up to 1.4 million Americans.

The study, published November 15 in the Open-Access journal PLOS Pathogens, shows that helminths can restore the balance of gut bacterial communities to the monkeys with chronic diarrhea. Inflammatory bowel diseases are driven by a misdirected immune response against gut bacteria (the microbiome) and are often associated with alterations in gut bacterial communities (known as dysbiosis).

"The idea for treating colitis with worms is not new, but how this therapy might work remains unclear," says the study's senior corresponding author, P'ng Loke, PhD, assistant professor of microbiology at NYU Langone Medical Center. "Our findings suggest that exposure to helminths may improve symptoms by restoring the balance to the microbial communities that are attached to the intestinal wall."

Because inflammatory bowel diseases are more common in countries with developed economies and is rare in developing countries, researchers have hypothesized that endemic helminth infections in developing countries may offer protection against this disease. In animal models of autoimmunity these worms have suppressed inflammation, and clinical trials indicate that helminth therapy can be beneficial in inflammatory bowel diseases.

Juvenile monkeys kept in captivity often spontaneously develop chronic diarrhea that is difficult to treat by veterinarians. Dr. Loke and his colleagues treated 5 monkeys with chronic diarrhea with microscopic helminth eggs and collected tissue samples before and after treatment.

Tissues samples taken before treatment from sick monkeys had many more attached bacteria than healthy monkeys and the types of attached bacteria were completely altered (dysbiosis). This attachment of altered bacteria was associated with a very strong inflammatory response. After treatment, the types of bacteria attached to tissue samples were much more similar to healthy monkeys, and 4 out of 5 monkeys had less diarrhea and started to gain weight.

Dr. Loke and colleagues are now embarking on a new clinical trial designed to study how pig helminth eggs (TSO) may relieve symptoms of ulcerative colitis (UC) and have started enrolling patients at NYU Langone Medical Center. TSO is being used because it can be produced under pathogen free conditions certified by the FDA for clinical trials and cannot be transmitted from person to person.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Mara Jana Broadhurst, Amir Ardeshir, Bittoo Kanwar, Julie Mirpuri, Uma Mahesh Gundra, Jacqueline M. Leung, Kirsten E. Wiens, Ivan Vujkovic-Cvijin, Charlie C. Kim, Felix Yarovinsky, Nicholas W. Lerche, Joseph M. McCune, P'ng Loke. Therapeutic Helminth Infection of Macaques with Idiopathic Chronic Diarrhea Alters the Inflammatory Signature and Mucosal Microbiota of the Colon. PLoS Pathogens, 2012; 8 (11): e1003000 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003000

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Probiotic worm treatment may improve symptoms of colitis by restoring gut bacteria to healthy state." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121115172030.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2012, November 15). Probiotic worm treatment may improve symptoms of colitis by restoring gut bacteria to healthy state. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121115172030.htm
Public Library of Science. "Probiotic worm treatment may improve symptoms of colitis by restoring gut bacteria to healthy state." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121115172030.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Nine-Month-Old Baby Can't Open His Mouth

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) Nine-month-old Wyatt Scott was born with a rare disorder called congenital trismus, which prevents him from opening his mouth. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

'Holy Grail' Of Weight Loss? New Find Could Be It

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) In a potential breakthrough for future obesity treatments, scientists have used MRI scans to pinpoint brown fat in a living adult for the first time. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Little Progress Made In Fighting Food Poisoning, CDC Says

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) A new report shows rates of two foodborne infections increased in the U.S. in recent years, while salmonella actually dropped 9 percent. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. 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