Protective effects of Lactobacillus fermentum U-21 against paraquat-induced oxidative stress in Caenorhabditis elegans and mouse models

World J Microbiol Biotechnol. 2020 Jul 6;36(7):104. doi: 10.1007/s11274-020-02879-2.


The aims of this work were to identify in vivo manifestations of antioxidant activity of Lactobacillus strains isolated from healthy human biotopes and to show the possibility of protective action of the selected strain on the model of oxidative stress induced by paraquat in the model of early Parkinson's disease (PD) in mice. We studied the protective effects of 14 Lactobacillus strains belonging to five species on the lifespan of the soil nematode Caenorhabditis elegans experiencing oxidative stress induced by paraquat. The Lactobacillus strains used in this study were selected previously based on their ability to reduce oxidative stress in vitro. One of the strains that showed promising results on C. elegans was tested in a mouse model of PD in which C57/BL6 mice were injected regularly with paraquat. We assessed the state of their internal organs, the preservation of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra as well as their motor coordination. The positive impact of Lactobacillus fermentum U-21 strain supplementation on paraquat treated animals was observed. L. fermentum U-21 strain reduced the toxicity of paraquat in C. elegans model: the lifespan of the soil nematode C. elegans was extended by 25%. L. fermentum U-21 protected the mice against anatomical and behavioral changes typical of PD: there were no changes in the coordination of movement and the preservation of dopaminergic neurons in the brain. Life span of the nematode C. elegans pre-grown on a lawn of E. coli OP50 + Lactobacillus under oxidative stress conditions; the concentration of the oxidizing agent paraquat in the S medium was 50 mmol l-1.

Keywords: Caenorhabditis elegans; Lactobacillus; Model of Parkinson’s disease; Oxidative stress; Paraquat; Probiotics.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / drug effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Dopaminergic Neurons / drug effects
  • Escherichia coli
  • Lactobacillus / physiology
  • Lactobacillus fermentum / genetics
  • Lactobacillus fermentum / physiology*
  • Longevity
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects*
  • Paraquat / adverse effects*
  • Parkinson Disease
  • Survival Rate


  • Antioxidants
  • Paraquat