Background: Viral respiratory tract infection is the most common illness among humans. Probiotics have been known to enhance the immune system and, therefore, may represent a significant therapeutic advancement for treating viral respiratory tract infections.
Objective: A controlled study was conducted to evaluate the effects of the patented GanedenBC30 probiotic (Bacillus coagulans GBI-30, 6086, marketed as Sustenex [Ganeden Biotech, Inc., Mayfield Heights, OH]) on the immune system when exposed to adenovirus and influenza in otherwise healthy adults.
Methods: Ten healthy men and women (average age, 44 years) were instructed to consume 1 capsule of GanedenBC30 with water once a day for 30 days. At baseline and after completion of the 30-day treatment, blood levels of cytokines were measured in vitro after T-cell exposure to adenovirus and influenza A. Each participant served as his/her own control with baseline blood draw.
Results: The use of GanedenBC30 significantly increased T-cell production of TNF-alpha in response to adenovirus exposure (P = 0.027) and influenza A (H3N2 Texas strain) exposure (P = 0.004), but it did not have a significant effect on the response to other strains of influenza. No serious adverse events were reported throughout the study.
Conclusions: The patented GanedenBC30 probiotic may be a safe and effective therapeutic option for enhancing T-cell response to certain viral respiratory tract infections.