Background: Evidence suggests a role of intestinal microbiota-host interactions in the pathophysiology and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Objective: The objective of this article is to assess the effects of Lactobacillus paracasei CNCM I-1572 on clinical and gut microbiota-related factors in IBS.
Methods: We conducted a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, cross-over, 18-week, placebo-controlled, pilot trial assessing the effect of Lactobacillus paracasei CNCM I-1572 on symptoms, gut microbiota composition, fecal short chain fatty acid (SCFA), immunoglobulin A, and cytokines in IBS. The intestinal microbial ecosystem was characterized by 16S rRNA gene profiling.
Results: Forty IBS patients were enrolled from five Italian centers. Lactobacillus paracasei CNCM I-1572 did not significantly improve IBS symptoms, including primary efficacy variables worst abdominal pain/discomfort and IBS degree of relief. Interestingly, Lactobacillus paracasei CNCM I-1572 induced a significant reduction in genus Ruminococcus, dominated by taxa related to Ruminococcus bromii and Ruminococcus callidus, a significant increase in the SCFAs acetate and butyrate, and a significant reduction in the pro-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-15.
Conclusions: This pilot study shows that Lactobacillus paracasei CNCM I-1572 is able to modulate gut microbiota structure/function and reduce immune activation in IBS. As no statistically significant effect on IBS-symptoms was found, further studies are necessary to determine the role of this probiotic in IBS. The study was registered at ClinicalTrials.gov registry under identifier NCT02371499.
Keywords: Irritable bowel syndrome; dietary compounds; microbiota; probiotics.