Product Review: Alflorex (UK market) – aka ALIGN

A reader asked me to review this new probiotic. It has some “compelling marketing” — which likely raised flags of concerns to the reader. (Amazon UK Link)

Alf

Analysis

Obtuse labeling:  bacterial culture 35624 — What the Taxonomy is this bacteria!!!!

Exploring on their site we see it is “Bifidobacterium 35624 ” with the claim:

“The 35624 culture in Alflorex has been shown in 2 clinical trials and in scientific publications to remain active right through the digestive system and to reach the bowel with its properties intact.”

With some digging, we find that it is Align (Bifidobacterium longum subsp. longum 35624™)  i.e. “Bifibobacterium longum subsp. longum 35624™ strain (formerly named Bifidobacterium longum subsp. infantis)” [2016]

End Products

So we know it’s end products are:

  • ?-Amino butyric acid (GABA)
  • Biotin (Vitamin B7)
  • Folate (Vitamin B9)
  • Lactic acid
  • L-Tryptophan
  • Pyridoxine
  • Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
  • Urolithins

Pub Med Studies

  • “Additionally, the treatment with Bifidobacterium infantis 35624 in CFS patients, during the same period, reduced inflammatory biomarkers” [2018] – this does not say that symptoms improved … just lab tests.
  • “This study found that 2 weeks of B. infantis 35624 (Align) supplementation affects lactulose breath test assessment for SIBO by significantly increasing methane, but not hydrogen, excretion after lactulose administration. Methane levels reached values that would be considered positive for SIBO patients. This study suggests that patients undergoing LBT should discontinue probiotics prior to the test as these supplements may alter the test results.” [2018]
  • ” Treatment with single probiotic B. infantis didn’t impact on abdominal pain, bloating/distention, or bowel habit satisfaction among IBS patients. ” [2017]
  • “B. infantis 35624 did not show a significant improvement in the mean severity of symptoms of abdominal discomfort and bloating in a non-IBS-patient population.” [2017]
  • “Supplementation significantly increased fecal B. infantis 35624 excretion vs. placebo in IBS subjects; excretion in healthy subjects receiving supplement was quantitatively similar. Fecal levels of the probiotic declined and approached baseline once dosing ceased, documenting that colonization is transient. ” [2013]

I did an earlier post in 2013 on Align —  some readers reported histamine issues (which agrees with published studies).

Bottom Line

If SIBO is your diagnosis — stop taking it, the taking of it may be causing a POSITIVE breathe test!!!!

If you have IBS or CFS, do not expect any symptom improvement.

Cost:

  • UK: £24.94 ($33) for 30 capsules for $1.10/capsule
  • US: $0.73/capsule