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Probiotic supplementation can alleviate bacterial vaginosis and osteoporosis


Researchers at Kyung Hee University in South Korea examined the effects of probiotics Gardnerella vaginalis (GV)-induced vaginosis and ovariectomy-induced osteoporosis in female mice. They reported their findings in an article published in the Journal of Medicinal Food.

  • The excessive expression of tumor necrosis factor-(TNF-a) is known to aggravate bacterial vaginosis (BV) and osteoporosis.
  • To determine if probiotics can alleviate both, the researchers isolated anti-inflammatory Lactobacillus plantarum NK3 and Bifidobacterium longum NK49 from kimchi as well as human fecal samples.
  • They then tested the effects of these good bacteria in female mice with BV and osteoporosis.
  • They reported that oral gavage of NK3 alone or in combination with NK49 significantly alleviated GV-induced vaginosis, inhibited NF-kB activation and TNF-a expression in the vagina and uterus, and decreased GV population in the vagina.
  • The researchers also found that treatment with NK3 alone or combined with NK49 alleviated ovariectomy-induced osteoporosis and obesity; increased blood calcium, phosphorus and osteocalcin levels; and suppressed weight gain.
  • Additionally, NK3 and/or NK49 treatments reduced TNF-a expression and NF-kB activation in the colon and restored optimal gut microbiota composition.
  • GV-induced vaginosis and ovariectomy had previously increased colonic myeloperoxidase activity, TNF-a expression and fecal Proteobacteria population.

Based on these findings, the researchers concluded that probiotics present in fermented foods like kimchi can simultaneously alleviate BV and osteoporosis by regulating gut microbial composition.

Journal Reference:

Kim D-E, Kim JK, Han SK, Jang SE, Han MJ, Kim DH. LACTOBACILLUS PLANTARUM NK3 AND BIFIDOBACTERIUM LONGUM NK49 ALLEVIATE BACTERIAL VAGINOSIS AND OSTEOPOROSIS IN MICE BY SUPPRESSING NF-?B-LINKED TNF-? EXPRESSION. Journal of Medicinal Food. 11 October 2019;22(10):1022–1031. DOI: 10.1089/jmf.2019.4419

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