Master of Science (MS)


Nutrition and Food Sciences

Document Type



Gut diseases like diarrhea, irritable bowel symptoms, and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) can be treated with probiotics therapy. Probiotics have been recognized for their ability to promote the development of gut health and improve immune system. However, a difficulty involved with the use of probiotics is the need for and the ability to deliver a sufficient concentration of viable probiotic to the appropriate site. This can be difficult since the most common (and probably easiest) method of delivering the probiotic is orally. As such, the probiotic must be capable of surviving the hostile conditions of passage through the G.I. tract. In general, most probiotics have difficulty surviving such a passage without some type of protection from the harsh conditions encountered. Therefore, some type of delivery system that could protect the live probiotic is needed. In addition, if the delivery system could promote colonization of the bacteria it would provide an important additional benefit. Lactobacillus plantarum has been shown to possess desired probiotic characteristics, when delivered in sufficient concentration. The objective of this preliminary study is to evaluate the effect of a delivery system (ILP) containing immobilized Lactobacillus plantarum NCIMB 8826 (LP) on rice bran fiber (RBF) and to obtain information to guide a larger rat model study and evaluation of the delivery system. For this purpose, a limited rat model was used in this preliminary study. Rats were divided into groups and the groups were fed various diets (some including RBF and ILP) for 21 days. After 21 days, some rats were euthanized, while a second group of rats had colitis induced with 2-4-6 trinitrobenzene sulfonic acid (TNBS). The second group were fed for an additional 5 days and then euthanized. After the 21 days, a third group of rats were fed without ILP for 7 days and then euthanized. All the groups of rats were analyzed for concentrations of interleukin (IL)-10, IL-12 p70 and Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) in colonic tissues and SCFAs production in cecal contents. Rats that consumed larger amounts of ILP had lower colonic damage scores after TNBS treatment. ILP facilitated the production of IL-10 (anti-inflammatory cytokine) while suppressing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-12p70 and TNF-α in healthy rats. ILP helped the rats maintain the pH of cecal contents and limit the reduction of SCFAs production in rats treated with TNBS. Rats fed with RBF had higher butyric acid concentration in cecal contents. LP was detected in the feces 7 days after the end of 3 weeks of ILP consumption. The new delivery system has the potential to promote probiotics colonization in the gut, regulate the immune system, and promote SCFAs production. The findings of this study are expected to provide input to design a large rat model study.



Committee Chair

Sathivel, Subramaniam



Available for download on Monday, August 19, 2024