Role of probiotics in the prevention of the enteric colonization by Candida in preterm newborns: incidence of late-onset sepsis and neurological outcome

J Perinatol. 2011 Jan;31(1):63-9. doi: 10.1038/jp.2010.57. Epub 2010 Apr 22.


Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of probiotics in the prevention of gastrointestinal colonization by Candida species, of late-onset sepsis and neurological outcome in preterm newborns.

Study design: A prospective study was conducted in 249 preterms who were subdivided into three groups: one group (n=83) was supplemented with Lactobacillus (L.) reuteri, one group with L. rhamnosus (n=83) and the other with no supplementation (n=83). The fungal colonization in the gastrointestinal tract, the late onset of sepsis and clinical parameters were recorded. A neurological structured assessment was further performed at 1 year of age.

Result: Candida stool colonization was significantly higher (P<0.01) in the control group than in the groups treated with probiotics. The L. reuteri group presented a significantly higher reduction in gastrointestinal symptoms than did the L. rhamnosus and control groups. Infants treated with probiotics showed a statistically significant lower incidence of abnormal neurological outcome than did the control group.

Conclusion: The use of both probiotics seems to be effective in the prevention of gastrointestinal colonization by Candida, in the protection from late-onset sepis and in reducing abnormal neurological outcomes in preterms.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Candidiasis / epidemiology
  • Candidiasis / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / epidemiology
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Premature*
  • Intensive Care Units, Neonatal / statistics & numerical data
  • Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosus
  • Limosilactobacillus reuteri
  • Male
  • Mycoses / epidemiology
  • Mycoses / prevention & control
  • Nervous System Diseases / diagnosis
  • Nervous System Diseases / epidemiology
  • Nervous System Diseases / prevention & control
  • Neurologic Examination
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use*
  • Prospective Studies