Is it possible to make yoghurt by adding BioGaia’s probiotic L. reuteri strains to milk?

It cannot be recommended to use BioGaia’s probiotic Lactobacillus reuteri strains for yoghurt production. The BioGaia L. reuteri strains are probiotic bacteria of human origin that thrives in the human GI tract and exerts its effect there. It does not produce the right compounds that turn milk into yoghurt. They do not multiply properly and do not give texture or flavor to the product when fermented in any type of food.

BioGaia cannot take responsibility for the safety of “yoghurt products” produced at home with our probiotic strains.

Can BioGaia products be taken together with antibiotics?

Yes, BioGaia producs can be taken together with antibiotics. Antibiotics disrupt the natural balance in the gut. As BioGaia products help to maintain a balanced gut microbiota, they may reduce common side effects of antibiotics. We recommend to take the antibiotic two hours before or after the probiotic.

What are the health benefits of probiotics?

Probiotics have shown beneficial effects in gastrointestinal disorders such as colic, constipation, and diarrhea. Promising results have also been shown for the maintenance of a normal immune function and protection against infections. Further, probiotics have  shown benefits in oral health. BioGaia offers clinically-proven and user-friendly probiotic products to consumers world wide. Due to the regulatory situation we cannot communicate the effect of our products or claim health benefits. In Europe the use of nutrition and health claims is regulated by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and today there are no approved health claims for probiotics.

Why is it important to define a probiotic bacteria on strain level?

Bacteria are classified into genus, species and strains. Probiotic strains of the same species have different characteristics, and may therefore have different health effects. For example, clinical studies with the two strains, Lactobacillus reuteri ATCC PTA 6475 and Lactobacillus reuteri DSM 17938, have shown different effects in clinical studies. That is why a probiotic product must be defined on strain level.

What is the difference between probiotics and prebiotics?

Probiotics are live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host. Prebiotics are fibres and carbohydrates that stimulate the growth of bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract.

What does the company name BioGaia mean?

The name BioGaia is made up of two words, Bio and Gaia. Bio stands for life and living organisms, natural, and ecological systems. Gaia, according to Greek mythology, is a goddess, the creator of all life, the sister of Eros and a personification of the Earth.

What are probiotics?

Probiotics are good bacteria that can be found in dietary supplements and sometimes in dairy products. Probiotics are defined as ”live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host.” (WHO/FAO 2002, Hill C et al. 2014). An important criterium for qualifying as a true probiotic is that health benefits have been proven in clinical studies. Furthermore, a probiotic product must contain the same bacterial strain(s) and the same dose that was used in the clinical studies.


Effectiveness of Lactobacillus reuteri in children with active distal ulcerative colitis

This was a prospective, randomised, double-blind and placebo-controlled trial in children (6-18y) with moderately active distal ulcerative colitis who were concomitantly treated with oral mesalazine. The aim was to investigate the adjunctive effect of the probiotic on inflammation and cytokine expression in the rectal mucosa.

Forty children were enrolled, of whom 31 completed the 8-week study. Lactobacillus reuteri ATCC 55730 (10^10 CFU, n=16) or placebo (n=15) was administered once daily as a rectal enema before bedtime.

The score for the Mayo Disease Activity Index, DAI, (including the criteria stool frequency, bleeding, physician’s assessment of disease activity and mucosal appearance) was evaluated at baseline and on the day after the intake of study product had stopped. The Mayo DAI decreased significantly in the Lactobacillus reuteri group: 3.2 ± 1.3 vs. 8.6 ± 0.8 at baseline (p < 0.01), compared to placebo: 7.1 ± 1.1 vs. 8.7 ± 0.7 (NS); p<0.001 for mean values between groups. The histological score was significantly decreased in the active group: 0.6 ± 0.5 vs. 4.5 ± 0.6 (P < 0.01), but not in the placebo group (2.9 ± 0.8 vs. 4.6 ± 0.6, NS). The mucosal expression of cytokines was evaluated at baseline and after 8 weeks. It was significantly changed only in the Lactobacillus reuteri group: the anti-inflammatory IL-10 increased (p<0.01) whereas the pro-inflammatory IL-1beta, TNF-alpha and IL-8 all decreased (p<0.01). Clinical remission (DAI < 2.0) was achieved in 5 patients (31%) taking the probiotic but in none of the placebo subjects (p<0.05). All patients in the Lactobacillus reuteri group showed a clinical response, defined as a decrease of ≥ 2 points in the Mayo DAI, compared to 53% in the placebo group. No disease flare-ups occurred in any of the groups.

In children with active distal ulcerative colitis, rectal infusion of Lactobacillus reuteri effectively attenuated mucosal inflammation and changed the mucosal expression of cytokines to a less inflammatory pattern.