Combination of probiotics with different functions alleviate DSS-induced colitis by regulating intestinal microbiota, IL-10, and barrier function

  • Yanbo Wang
  • Qiuhong Xie
  • Ying Zhang
  • Wen Ma
  • Ke Ning
  • Jun-Yan Xiang
  • Jingwen Cui
  • Hongyu XiangEmail author
Applied microbial and cell physiology


The potential of probiotics for treating ulcerative colitis (UC) has attracted increasing attention. However, more studies are still needed to guide physicians on the proper selection and use of probiotics. Here, we propose that combination of multiple probiotics with different functions can reduce intestinal inflammation. In this study, the effects of probiotics (Lactobacillus reuteri, Bacillus coagulans, Bifidobacterium longum, and Clostridium butyricum) on the physiology and histopathology of colon were evaluated in a dextran sulfate sodium (DSS)-induced colitis mouse model. The combined species, as well as the species individually, were tested and compared with sulfasalazine (SASP) and two Chinese herbal therapies. Results show that the functions of the four probiotic strains were different in regulating intestinal immunity and barrier function. The four-species probiotic cocktail was more effective than the species individually and anti-inflammatory drugs in repairing the dysbiosis of mucosal microbial ecology and reducing intestinal inflammation. The multi-strain probiotic mixture increased the proportion of beneficial bacteria and decreased the proportion of pro-inflammatory bacteria in the colonic mucosa. In addition, probiotic mixture significantly enhanced the expression of IL-10 and intestinal barrier function. These results suggest that a combination of multiple probiotics with different functions has synergistic effects and can restore the balance of interactions between microorganisms and immunological niches.


Multi-strain probiotics Synergistic effects Mucosal microbial ecology IL-10 Intestinal barrier Immunological niches 


Funding information

This work was supported by the Science and Technology Development Planning of Jilin [20180201078YY].

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

The animal experiment was approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee of Jilin University (IACUC). All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Supplementary material

253_2019_10259_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (791 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 791 kb).


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Life SciencesJilin UniversityJilinPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory for Molecular Enzymology and Engineering of Ministry of Education, School of Life SciencesJilin UniversityJilinPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.National Engineering Laboratory for AIDS Vaccine, School of Life SciencesJilin UniversityJilinPeople’s Republic of China

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