Dynamic In Vitro Models of the Human Gastrointestinal Tract as Relevant Tools to Assess the Survival of Probiotic Strains and Their Interactions with Gut Microbiota

Microorganisms. 2015 Oct 23;3(4):725-45. doi: 10.3390/microorganisms3040725.


The beneficial effects of probiotics are conditioned by their survival during passage through the human gastrointestinal tract and their ability to favorably influence gut microbiota. The main objective of this study was to use dynamic in vitro models of the human digestive tract to investigate the effect of fasted or fed state on the survival kinetics of the new probiotic Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain CNCM I-3856 and to assess its influence on intestinal microbiota composition and activity. The probiotic yeast showed a high survival rate in the upper gastrointestinal tract whatever the route of admistration, i.e., within a glass of water or a Western-type meal. S. cerevisiae CNCM I-3856 was more sensitive to colonic conditions, as the strain was not able to colonize within the bioreactor despite a twice daily administration. The main bacterial populations of the gut microbiota, as well as the production of short chain fatty acids were not influenced by the probiotic treatment. However, the effect of the probiotic on the gut microbiota was found to be individual dependent. This study shows that dynamic in vitro models can be advantageously used to provide useful insight into the behavior of probiotic strains in the human digestive environment.

Keywords: Saccharomyces cerevisiae; food matrix; human gastrointestinal tract; in vitro models; intestinal microbiota; probiotic; survival.