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Effectiveness of microbiological therapy

Active principles

Due to the diversity of the products, the following fundamental active principles are distinguished:

• effect through influencing the bacterial environment by large amounts of added microbes (lactic acid bacteria),

• non-specific immune system effect on phagocytes and the complement system,

• specific immune system effect on the B and T cell system (Escherichia coli, Enterococcus)

specific effect on the immune system on the basis of the inoculation principle (opportunistic bacteria).

 

Physiological mucosal flora

The human gastrointestinal tract houses a complex and adaptive microbial ecosystem which only establishes itself after birth. Species of the Enterobacteriaceae family and the Bacteroides and Bifidobacterium genera are the first to appear. As you grow older the number of different, mostly anaerobic, bacteria species increases. According to estimates, some 1,000 different species of bacteria populate the gut lumen, the mucin layer and the mucosal surface. In this respect, the small intestine shows a considerably lower-scale layer of bacteria, with 103 to 107 cells per gram of dry mass, than the large intestine (1,011 to 1,012 cells per gram of dry mass). Bacteroides, Eubacterium, Bifidobacterium, Clostridium, Fusobacterium and Peptostreptococcus thrive here. In the facultative anaerobes organism group, there are Gram-negative Enterobacteriaceae (Escherichia coli, Klebsiella spp. and Proteus spp.) and Gram-positive Enterococcus spp. [15]

The shared existence of the host and the microorganisms offers advantages to both sides: Nutritional components and substances formed by the host serve as sources of carbon and energy for the microbes.

Conversely, the body is provided with short-chain fatty acids which are produced as a product of the fermentation of the microflora (acetic acid, propanoic acid and butanoic acid). Butyrate serves as a main source of energy for the enterocytes, whilst acetate and propionate are metabolised in the muscle tissue and liver, respectively. 5 to 10% of the total energy supply for a human being is taken from short-chain fatty acids [7].

Furthermore, the microflora are involved in many biochemical processes, such as the metabolisation of steroids and bile acids, and in the breakdown of polyphenolic chains. A particular importance of gut flora lies in protection from pathogens and the stimulation of the mucosal immune system (see below)

 

For the types of bacteria and their functions, see Fig. 1.

 

Classification into protective flora, immuno-flora and proteolytic flora has proven itself in terms of diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.

(Click on the picture to enlarge)

Fig. 1: Bacteria types and their importance for human beings.

 

 
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