Probiotics: an Overview

  • R. Fuller
Part of the Springer Series in Applied Biology book series (SSAPPL.BIOLOGY)


The first recorded probiotics were fermented milks produced for human consumption. However, the subsequent development of the concept has been based on results obtained in animal experiments and most of the current market in probiotics is for animal preparations (Lloyd-Evans 1989). It is, therefore, even in a contribution to a book on human probiotics, necessary to use animal data to illustrate the history of the concept and to establish the principles on which it is based and which will govern future development. It is possible to relate directly some of the animal data to humans, but other information obtained from animal experiments should be transposed with caution. Indeed, the host-specific nature of microbial gut colonisation makes it unwise to transpose results between any animal species without considering very carefully the different factors which may be operating.


Fermentation Penicillin Fractionation Bacillus Interferon 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Barrow PA, Tucker IF, Simpson JM (1987) Inhibition of colonisation of the chicken alimentary tract with Salmonella typhinurium by Gram-negative facultatively anaerobic bacteria J Hyg 98: 311–322Google Scholar
  2. Bassler A, Lutz JR (1922) Bacillus acidophiles: its very limited value in intestinal disorders. J Am Med Ass 79: 607–608Google Scholar
  3. Benno Y, Mitsuoka J (1986) Development of the intestinal microflora in humans and animals Bifid. Microflora 5: 13–25Google Scholar
  4. Bibel DJ (1988) Elie Metchnikoffs Bacillus of Long Life. ASM News 54: 661–665Google Scholar
  5. Biovati B, Castagnoli P, Crociani F, Trovatelli LD (1984) Species of Biofidobacterium in the faeces of infants Microbiologica 7: 341–345Google Scholar
  6. Bloksma N, de Heer E, van Dijk M, Willers M (1979) Adjuvanicity of lactobacilli I differential effects of viable and killed cells. Clin Exp Immunol 37: 267–375Google Scholar
  7. Bohnhoff M, Drake BL, Miller CP (1954) Effect of streptomycin in susceptibility of intestinal tract to experimental Salmonella infection Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 86: 132–137Google Scholar
  8. Borriello SP, Barclay FE (1985) Protection of hamsters against Clostridium difficile ileocaecitis by prior colonisation with non-pathogenic strains. J Med Microbiol 19: 339–350PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bowden TA, Mansberger AR, Lykins LE (1981) Pseudomembranous enterocolitis: mechianism for restoring floral homeostasis. Am Surg 47: 178–183PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Bullen CL, Tearle PV, Willis AT (1975) Bifidobacteria in the intestinal tract of infants: an in vivo study. J Med Microbiol 9: 325–333CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Collins FM, Carter PB (1978) Growth of salmonellae in orally infected germfree mice. Infect Immun 21: 41–47PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. De Simone C, Bianchi-Salvadori B, Negri R, Ferrazzi M, Baldinelli L, Besely R (1986) The adjuvant effect of yogurt on production of gamma-interferon by ConA stimulated human peripheral blood lymphocytes. Nutr Rpts Int 3: 419–431Google Scholar
  13. Duval-Iflah Y, Ouriet MF, Moreau C, Daniel N, Gabilan JC, Raiband P (1982) Implantation précoce d’une southe de Escherichia coli dans l’intestin de nouveau-nés humains: effet de barrière vis-a-vis des souches de E. coli antibiorésistantes. Ann Microbiol (Inst Paster) 133A: 393–408Google Scholar
  14. Eiseman B, Silem W, Bascomb WS, Kanvor AJ (1958) Fecal enema as an adjunct in the treatment of pseudomembranous enterocolitis. Surgery 44: 854–858PubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Florey HW (1946) The use of micro-organisms for therapeutic purposes. Yale J Biol Med 19:101–117 Freter R (1955) The faecal enteric cholera infection in the guinea pig chieved by inhibition of normal enteric flora. J Infect Dis 97: 57–64Google Scholar
  16. Freter R (1956) Experimental enteric Shigella and Vibrio infection in mice and guinea pigs. J Exp Med 104: 411–418PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Freter R (1992) Factors affecting the microecology of the gut. In: Fuller R (ed) Probiotics. The scientific basis, Chapman and Hall, London pp 111–144Google Scholar
  18. Freter R, Abrams GD (1972) Function of various intestinal bacteria in converting germfree mice to the normal state. Infect Immun 6: 119–126PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Frost WD, Hankinson H (1931) Lactobacillus acidophilus. An annotated bibiography. Davis-Greene Corporation, Milton WisconsinGoogle Scholar
  20. Fuller R (1989) Probiotics in man and animals. J Appl Bact 66: 365–378CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Fuller R (1990) Probiotics in Agriculture Ag Biotech News 2: 217–220Google Scholar
  22. Goldin BR, Gorbach SL (1980) Effect of Lactobacillus acidophilus dietary supplementation on 1,2-dimethylhydrazine dihydrochloride-induced intestinal cancer in rats. J Nall Cancer Inst 64: 263–265Google Scholar
  23. Goldin BR, Gorbach SL (1984) The effect of milk and lactobacillus feeding on human intestinal bacterial enzyme activity. Am J Clin Nutr 39: 756–761PubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. Gorbach SL, Chang TW, Goldin BR (1987) Successful treatment of relapsing Clostridium difficile colitis with Lactobacillus GG. Lancet ü, 1519Google Scholar
  25. Hall MA, Cole CB, Smith SL, Fuller R, Rolles CJ (1990) Factors influencing the presence of faecal lactobacilli in early infancy. Arch Dis Childhood 65: 185–188CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hughens HV (1925) Colonic irrigation and B. acidophilus diarrhoea. US Navy Med Bull 22: 691–692Google Scholar
  27. Hull TG, Rettger LF (1917) The influence of milk and carbohydrate feeding on the character of the intestinal flora. J Bact 2: 47–71PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Jesudason MV, Hentges DJ, Pongpech P (1989) Colonisation of Mice by Campylobacter jejuni. Infect Immun 57: 2279–2282PubMedGoogle Scholar
  29. Kato I, Yokokura T, Mutai M (1984) Augmentation of mouse natural killer cell activity by Lactobacillus casei and its surface antigens. Microbiol Immunol 28: 2099–217Google Scholar
  30. Kolars JC, Levitt MD, Aouji M, Savaino DA (1984) Yogurt-an autodigesting source of lactose. New Engl J Med 310: 1–3PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Kopeloff N (1923) Is Bacillus acidophilus therapy a strictly bacteriological phenomenon? Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 10:123–124Google Scholar
  32. Lilley DM, Stillwell RJ (1965) Probiotics: growth promoting factors produced by micro-organisms. Science 147: 747–748CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Lloyd-Evans LPM (1989) Probiotics PJB Publications LtdGoogle Scholar
  34. Lundequist B, Nord CE, Winberg J (1985) The composition of the faecal microflora in breast-fed and bottle-fed infants from birth to eight weeks. Acta Paediatr Scand 74: 45–51PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Maier BR, Onderdonk AB, Baskets RC, Hentges DJ (1972) Shigella, indigenous flora interactions in mice. Amer J Clin Nutr 25: 1433–1440PubMedGoogle Scholar
  36. Mead GC, Impey CS (1987) The present status of the Nurmi concept for reducing carriage of food-poisoning salmoellae and other pathogens in live poultry. In: Smulders FJM (ed) Elimination of pathogenic organisms from meat and poultry Elsevier Ansterdam pp 57–77Google Scholar
  37. Metchnikoff E (1907a) Essais Optimistes. A Maloine, ParisGoogle Scholar
  38. Metchnikoff E (1907b) The Prolongation of Life, Optimistic Studies, Heinemann, LondonGoogle Scholar
  39. Neut C, Romond C, Beerens HA (1980) A contribution to the study of the distribution of Bifidobacterium species in the faecal flora of breast-fed and bottle-fed babies. Reprod Nutr Dev 20: 1679–1684PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Orla-Jensen S (1912) Maelkeribakterologi. SchOnbergske forlag, CopenhagenGoogle Scholar
  41. Parker RB (1974) Probiotics, the other half of the antibiotics story. Anim Nutr Hlth 29: 4–8Google Scholar
  42. Perdigon G, Nader de Marcias ME, Alvarez S, Oliver G, de Ruiz Holgado AAP (1986) Effect of perorally administered lactobacilli on macrophage activation in mice. Infect Immun 53: 404–410PubMedGoogle Scholar
  43. Pongpech P, Hentges DJ (1989) Inhibition of Shigella flexneri and enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli by volatile fatty acids in mice. Microbiol Ecol Hlth Dis 2: 153–161CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Poupard JA, Husain I, Norris RF (1973) Biology of Biffidobacteria Bacteriol. Rev 37: 136–165Google Scholar
  45. Raiband P (1992) Bacterial interactions in the gut In: Fuller R (ed) Probiotics. The scientific basis. Chapman and Hall London pp 9–28Google Scholar
  46. Rettger LF, Chaplin HA (1921) Therapeutic application of Bacillus acidophilus Proc Soc Exp Biol Med 19: 72–76Google Scholar
  47. Robertson B, Roerstad G, Engstad R, Raa J (1990) Enhancement of non-specific disease resistance in Atlantic salmon Salmo salar L, by glucan from Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell walls. J Fish Dis 13: 391–400CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Rotch TM, Kendall AI (1911) A preparatory study of the Bacillus acidophilus in regard to its possible therapeutic use. Am J Dis Child 2: 30–38Google Scholar
  49. Savage DC (1969) Microbiol interference between indigenous Yeast and Lactobacilli in the rodent stomach. J Bacteriol 98: 1278–1283PubMedGoogle Scholar
  50. Schwass A, Sjolin S. Trottestam U, Aransson B (1984) Relapsing Clostridium difficile enterocolitis cured by rectal infusion of normal faeces. Scand J Infect Dis 16: 211–215Google Scholar
  51. Sperti GS (1971) Probiotics Avi Publishing Co Inc, Westpoint ConnecticutGoogle Scholar
  52. Tannock GW (1983) Effect of dietary and environmental stress on the gastrointestinal microbiota. In: Hentges DJ (ed) Human Intestinal Microflora in Health and disease. Academic Press, New York pp 517–539Google Scholar
  53. Tissier H (1905) Repartition des microbes dans l’intestin du nourisson Ann Inst Past 19:109–115 Wilson KH, Perini F (1988) Role of competition for nutrients in suppression of Clostridium difficile by the colonic microflora. Infect Immun 56: 2610–2614Google Scholar
  54. Yahura T, Isojima S, Tsuchiya F, Mitsuoka T (1983) On the intestinal flora of bottle-fed infants. Bifid Microflora 2: 33–39Google Scholar
  55. Yasui H, Mike A Ohwaki M (1989) Immunogenicity of Bifidobacterium breve and change in antibody production in Peyer’s patches after aral administration. J Dairy Sci 72: 30–35PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Fuller

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations