Immunomodulatory function of lactic acid bacteria

Antonie Van Leeuwenhoek. Jul-Nov 1999;76(1-4):383-9.


Using mice, we found that oral administration of Bifidobacterium breve YIT4064 (B. breve) activated the humoral immune system, augmented anti-rotavirus IgA production or anti-influenza virus (IFV) IgG production and protected against rotavirus infection or influenza infection, respectively. Furthermore, when the B. breve was given to infants from an infant home, there was a significant reduction of the frequency of rotavirus shedding in stool samples during the administration of the bacteria. It was also found, again using mice, that oral administration of Lactobacillus casei strain Shirota (LcS) stimulated type 1 helper T (Th1) cells, activated the cellular immune system and inhibited incidence of tumors and IgE production. These results demonstrated that these two strains of lactic acid bacteria modulated the different immune systems each in its own way and prevented against various diseases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibody Formation
  • Bifidobacterium / immunology*
  • Gram-Positive Bacteria / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular
  • Infant
  • Influenza, Human / immunology
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control
  • Lactic Acid / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / immunology*
  • Neoplasms, Experimental / prevention & control
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use
  • Rotavirus Infections / immunology
  • Rotavirus Infections / prevention & control
  • Th1 Cells / immunology


  • Lactic Acid