CORK, Ireland, Aug. 26 (UPI) -- Probiotics, found naturally in yogurt, are known for gastrointestinal benefits that may extend to the whole body, a researcher in Ireland said.
"Inflammation is a major factor in a number of chronic diseases affecting millions of people and can cause an unwanted impact on healthy tissue," lead investigator Liam O'Mahony of University College Cork said in a statement. "Past research has shown that the probiotic Bifidobacterium infantis 35624 can positively impact the body's immune defense3 and this most recent data suggest that its benefits are not restricted to the gastrointestinal tract."
Inflammation is associated with a wide range of conditions, including: arthritis, bacterial-induced colitis, type I diabetes and organ transplantation.
The researchers examined the effect of Bifidobacterium infantis 35624 administration on immunity to salmonella, harmful bacteria that can cause intestinal infections and trigger the body's inflammatory response. Bifidobacterium infantis 35624, a probiotic strain isolated from healthy human gastrointestinal tissue, was administered to mice in freeze-dried powder at least three weeks prior to salmonella infection.
The study, published in the journal PLoS Pathogens, found that animals that received Bifidobacterium infantis 35624 showed dramatically increased numbers of certain immune cells that control the immune system response to harmful pathogens, in this case salmonella.