Supplementation of infant probiotic preparation has allowed infants to tolerate cow’s milk by acting on their gut microbiota.
A new study in The ISME Journal reports that probiotic supplementation of infant preparation eliminates allergy to cow’s milk by changing gut bacteria in infants. Intestinal bacteria of children who have developed a tolerance to cow’s milk after treatment with probiotics are significantly different from those of children who remained allergic.
Food allergies have gained ground in developed countries, with an increase of 20% in the last decade. Allergy to cow’s milk is one of the most common and affects about 3% of children worldwide.
New evidence suggests that the current environmental influences, such as the widespread use of antibiotics, diets rich in fat and low in fiber, reducing exposure to infectious diseases, cesarean birth and use of baby milk may have upset the mutually beneficial interactions that have developed over millions of years of coexistence between humans and bacteria that live in the intestinal tract. “This can lead to dysbiosis allergy in genetically predisposed individuals,” the authors explain.
A previous study showed that children with an allergy to cow’s milk and fed an infant formulation containing hydrolyzed casein supplemented with probiotics (Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG) develop tolerance to higher rates than children receive the same preparation without probiotics.
In this new study, conducted on 39 infants, researchers looked at whether the administration of probiotics can modulate the bacterial composition of the gut to improve the acquisition of tolerance to cow’s milk. They identified the bacteria in stool samples taken from healthy infants and in infants with allergy to cow’s milk and is fed a probiotic-enriched preparation is the same preparation without probiotics.
Overall, the intestinal flora of allergic children is different from that of healthy children, suggesting that the differences in composition of the intestinal flora influence the development of allergies.
The children who received formula supplemented with probiotics and have developed tolerance to cow’s milk, also had higher levels of bacteria that produce butyrate -a chain fatty acid Courtenay that allergic children also received supplementation probiotics but have not developed tolerance to cow’s milk. This shows that tolerance is related to the acquisition of specific strains of bacteria that produce butyrate. Butyrate helps maintain homeostasis in the gut.
The discovery of bacteria that lead to tolerance of potentially allergic foods, could be essential in the development of new treatments to help children with food allergies.