Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 53, Issue 3, pp 664–671 | Cite as

Age-related Effects of the Probiotic Bacterium Lactobacillus plantarum 299v on Gastrointestinal Function in Suckling Rats

  • Frida FåkEmail author
  • Siv Ahrné
  • Ann Linderoth
  • Göran Molin
  • Bengt Jeppsson
  • Björn Weström
Original Paper


The effect of a probiotic bacterium on gut function was studied in neonatal animals by using a model with suckling rats. Lactobacillus plantarum 299v (Lp299v) or saline (controls) was fed (3.0 × 106 CFU/g b.wt per day) for one week to rats aged either 3, 7 or 14 days, after which bacterial colonization, gut growth, and functional parameters were analyzed. In rats fed with Lp299v from 3 to 10 days of age, an increase in ceacal lactobacilli was correlated with reduced intestinal macromolecular permeability and increased mucosal protein compared to age-matched controls. Pups treated from 7 to 14 days of age showed a decrease in pancreas weight and protein content, whereas pups treated from 14 to 21 days of age showed little effect of the Lp299v treatment. The results indicated that the bacterial exposure affected the gut function, where the effects were age-related and the youngest rats appeared most sensitive.


Probiotics Bacteria Barrier function Pancreas Neonatal 



Lactobacillus plantarum 299v


Bovine IgG


Bovine serum albumin


Body weight


Colony-forming units



We wish to thank Mrs. Inger Mattsson for her expert technical assistance in analyzing the blood, intestinal, and pancreatic samples. The Swedish Research Council Formas is also acknowledged for financial support.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Frida Fåk
    • 1
    Email author
  • Siv Ahrné
    • 2
  • Ann Linderoth
    • 1
  • Göran Molin
    • 2
  • Bengt Jeppsson
    • 3
  • Björn Weström
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Cell and Organism Biology, Animal PhysiologyLund UniversityLundSweden
  2. 2.Department of Food Technology, Engineering and NutritionLund UniversityLundSweden
  3. 3.Department of SurgeryMalmö University HospitalMalmoSweden

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