Should probiotics star in Helicobacter pylori therapy?

By Annie Harrison-Dunn contact

- Last updated on GMT

Few subjects actually cured of Helicobacter pylori with probiotic therapy, review finds
Few subjects actually cured of Helicobacter pylori with probiotic therapy, review finds

Related tags: Stomach

There are some promising results but no firm conclusions when it comes to using probiotics against the stomach germ Helicobacter pylori, a review finds.

The review pointed towards the stimulation of acid by the probiotics as the main mechanism for this. However no “exhaustive data” ​was available due to poor study design.

Multicenter, high-quality, double-blind, randomised controlled trials were now needed to explore the potential of the most promising strain, Lactobacillus reuteri​, they wrote in the journal Gastroenterology Clinics of North America​.

Helicobacter pylori​ is a bacteria found in the sticky mucus that lines the stomach. About 40% of people in the UK have it, according to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS).

probiotic Lactobacillus bulgaricus bateria

While about 90% of those do not experience any problems, about 15% of the infected get ulcers either in the stomach (gastric ulcer) or in the small intestine’s duodenum (duodenal ulcer).

The germ has also been linked to a slight increase in the risk of stomach cancer, although treating H. pylori​ simply to reduce this risk would be ineffective, according to NHS advice.

The researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in the US, Otto-von-Guericke University in Germany and University of Parma and University of Sassari in Italy behind this latest review looked at 16 papers on different probiotic strains as both a ‘cure’ for and adjuvant therapy of H. pylori.

For Lactobacilli​ strains they said overall the probiotic affected affect H. pylori ​colonisation through acidity changes. Meanwhile some strains of lactobacilli may also exert strain-specific antimicrobial effects.

However, they concluded “few subjects were actually cured”.

Source: Gastroenterology Clinics of North America
Vol 44, Iss 3, pp. 565–575, doi:10.1016/j.gtc.2015.05.005
“Is There a Role for Probiotics in Helicobacter pylori Therapy?”
Authors: M. P. Dore, E. Goni and F. Di Mario 

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1 comment

Helicobakter

Posted by yves DELATTE,

Looking at the wrong tree... Helicobacter is a mucus problem, so, the ONLY EFFICIENT TREATMENT is with Sc.boulardii à 3x10E9 cfu/g. Regards from Biolatte Oy.

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