Lactobacillus plantarum (L. plantarum) is a well-known probiotic among the ingested-microorganism probiotics (i.e., ingested microorganisms associated with beneficial effects for the host). However, few studies have examined the effects of L. plantarum TWK10 (LP10) supplementation on exercise performance, physical fatigue, and gut microbial profile. Male Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) strain mice were divided into three groups (n = 8 per group) for oral administration of LP10 for six weeks at 0, 2.05 × 10⁸, or 1.03 × 10⁹ colony-forming units/kg/day, designated the vehicle, LP10-1X and LP10-5X groups, respectively. LP10 significantly decreased final body weight and increased relative muscle weight (%). LP10 supplementation dose-dependently increased grip strength (p < 0.0001) and endurance swimming time (p < 0.001) and decreased levels of serum lactate (p < 0.0001), ammonia (p < 0.0001), creatine kinase (p = 0.0118), and glucose (p = 0.0151) after acute exercise challenge. The number of type I fibers (slow muscle) in gastrocnemius muscle significantly increased with LP10 treatment. In addition, serum levels of albumin, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, and triacylglycerol significantly decreased with LP10 treatment. Long-term supplementation with LP10 may increase muscle mass, enhance energy harvesting, and have health-promotion, performance-improvement, and anti-fatigue effects.
Keywords: Lactobacillus plantarum TWK10; exercise performance; forelimb grip strength; gastrocnemius muscles.