Identification of collagen-binding proteins in Lactobacillus spp. with surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization-time of flight ProteinChip technology
Clinical and Investigative Medicine
Background: Probiotics-live microorganisms that confer a health benefit when taken in adequate amounts, usually as food supplements-are receiving renewed attention in the medical community. Some have been found to play a role in disease remediation. However, mainstream medicine and science remain divided about the validity of health claims made about them. Methods: To clarify the potential value of probiotics, we reviewed the scientific data on their role in preventing and treating surgical infections as well as some of our own studies of the effects of certain strains of lactobacilli on surgical implant infections. Principal findings: There is little rigorous evidence that probiotics may be beneficial in the prevention and treatment of wound infections. However, data from 3 clinical trials and from our laboratory indicate that certain strains of probiotic lactobacilli and their byproducts may help reduce infection rates in surgical patients and may ameliorate staphylococcus-related infections of surgical implants. Conclusion: Although there is good clinical evidence that certain probiotics may be beneficial in conditions such as diarrheal and inflammatory bowel diseases, more studies are required to apply these concepts to the prevention and treatment of wound and other surgical infections.