Effects and Mechanisms of Probiotics on the Prevention and Treatment of Allergic Rhinitis
Toshitaka Odamaki, Noriyuki Iwabuchi and Jin-zhong Xiao
from: Lactic Acid Bacteria and Bifidobacteria: Current Progress in Advanced Research (Edited by: Kenji Sonomoto and Atsushi Yokota). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2011)
Studies on probiotic bacteria in the treatment or prevention of allergic rhinitis have shown encouraging results such as improved symptoms, reduced use of relief medication and modulated immunological parameters. Bacterial cells were shown to be sampled by intestinal immunocompetent cells and hence exerted diverse immunomodulatory effects on the hosts. Clinical studies using Bifidobacterium longum BB536 to prevent or treat allergic reactions to Japanese cedar pollen demonstrated possible involvement of gut microbiota in sensitization to allergens and development of symptoms, and the potential of probiotics in stabilizing the microbiota. Based on these studies, we suggest two possible mechanisms for the antiallergic activity of probiotics: 1) immunomodulatory effects via bacterial cell components mediated by intestinal antigen-presenting cells (biogenic effects); 2) immunomodulatory effects via generating or stabilizing a balanced gut microbiota (probiotic effects). These studies suggest that probiotics may serve as an alternative treatment for allergic rhinitis, although further studies are needed to determine this conclusively read more ...