What is human sourced probiotics and why do we care?

If you look at different strains of a probiotic such as Lactobacillus Reuteri and dig far enough into research papers — you will see charts like the one below.

Reuteri.PNG
From prediction to function using evolutionary genomics: human-specific ecotypes of Lactobacillusreuteri have diverse probiotic functions[2014].

All strains of a Species are not created equal

As you can see above: some produce histamine, some produces folate and produce high amount of Reuterin (the natural antibiotic against infections). For many people, the ideal Lactobacillus Reuteri probiotic would be a folate producer, with no histamine and hgh Reuterin production. This excludes the fact that we also should care about the source.

Interspecies Probiotics do not take up residency

If you look at the above chart, and look at history: all of these creatures have co-existed with mankind (and each other) for millenium. It appears that some strains may be shared between chickens and humans – it’s unusual. There are no common strain between any of them. We know bacteria gets transferred by a kiss (see this post Kisses, Sex and FM/CFS/IBS ) and some intake of bacteria from these creatures would occur…. but none have ever taken up residency.

In Species Probiotics MAY take up residency

This has been demonstrated with a few probiotics that are human sourced: Mutaflor and SymbioFlor-2. It does not occur 100%. My memory (speculation) is that the samples were these studies were the same general ethnic base (Germany) as the source of these strains (in one case, we know it was a German Soldier fighting in the Great War – i.e. E.Coli Nissle 1917). For myself (and my wife), we both have significant German DNA — and they both work for us.

At this point, we hit the end of our current understanding.

The bottom line is simple:

  • If the strain does not come from a human, there is 0% chance of it taking up residency.
  • If the strain does come from a human, then the odds are better if some of your DNA comes from the same region as the source — and there is just one probiotic, Seed, that identify the source of their human-sourced strains. A Probiotic ahead of the rest of the market, as their label show below
    • US – likely a general blending of many DNA
    • IT – Italy
    • JP – Japan,
    • BE – Belgium,
    • SP – Spain
    • UK – United Kingdom
Another probiotic mixture that passes the bar…

Declaration of possible conflict of interests:
They do have a referral program, if you order via this link, I get free product (no cash).

Another probiotic mixture that passes the bar…

In general, I prefer single species or single strain probiotics that has studies on PubMed.  On occasion, a probiotic mixture makes it to my “second line probiotics to try”. There is a new pair on the market (one for men, one for women) that passes the bar.

What is my bar?

  • All of the strains are human sourced
  • A majority of strains have published studies showing benefits
  • Reasonable cost 

Ideally, the probiotic should persist. This appears to NOT OCCUR with Seed, see  this update on the results after 2 months on Seed.

Seed

This is a new company whose probiotics are available for PRE-ORDER for $49.99/month with a 30 day guarantee (I believe this is a money back if no change)

Considering this is ~100 BCFU/day, the cost is very reasonable.

seed

Female Version

Note that the country of origin is included in the strain designation.

Male Version

Bottom Line

This from a technical perspective, beats the pants off the typical health-food store probiotic mixture.

I grabbed one of the above strains (B. lactis SD-MB2409-IT) and did a little digging:

The origin of some of these strains appear to be bart.pl, they have a very informative list of their strains to research studies PDF that can be downloaded here.

They do have a referral program, if you order via this link, I get free product (no cash).

Autism Spectrum successfully treated — but….

I am a (very) high functioning Autism Spectrum. People who hear me speak will often assume that I am an immigrant or that my parents spoke a foreign language at home. Wrong!  I had Rubella / German Measles at 18 months which was associated with my not learning to talk until I was 8 (a classic symptom for autism), just like a strong disposition to mathematics is also associated with autism. As a speculation, the autism may be resulted from the microbiome shift that the Rubella triggered. 60% of ME/CFS onset is reported to be infection triggered and 40% stress. An infection may well do a setup for later ME/CFS by pre-disposing the person for being stress sensitive (stress is an an establish dimension for autism).

Today, Arizona State University released a press release “Autism symptoms reduced nearly 50% two years after fecal transplant‘.

demonstrate long-term beneficial effects for children diagnosed with ASD through a revolutionary technique known as Microbiota Transfer Therapy (MTT), a special type of fecal transplant originally pioneered by Dr. Thomas Borody, an Australian gastroenterologist. Remarkably, improvements in gut health and autism symptoms appear to persist long after treatment. …
A professional evaluator found a 45% reduction in core ASD symptoms (language, social interaction and behavior) at two years post-treatment compared to before treatment began.

An earlier study with only vancomycin (an antibiotic) had found major temporary improvements in GI and autism symptoms, but the benefits were lost a few weeks after treatment stopped despite use of over-the-counter probiotics.

In Australia, Fecal Microbiota Transplantation (FMT) was initially developed by Borody. At his Centre for Digestive Diseases in Sydney, Borody has overseen more than 18,000 FMTs for various disorders since 1987. He pioneered in Australia the use of FMT for colitis and Clostridium difficile infection, and was the first to use oral FMT to treat children with ASD. Only one dose of FMT is usually enough to cure C. Difficile infections, but his patients with autism were far harder to treat. He discovered that three months of daily FMT was required to treat his autism patients, but eventually resulted in significant improvements in both GI and autism symptoms.


The initial study involved a “first-generation” estimate as to optimal dose and duration of treatment, and it was enough for 90% of the children to have substantial benefit. 

The But….

It requires an long course of daily FMT…. not just one or two..


He discovered that three months of daily FMT was required to treat his autism patients, but eventually resulted in significant improvements in both GI and autism symptoms.

This may also be the scenario with other stubborn conditions such as SIBO, FM, Lyme, IBS, ME/CFS. Once a dysfunction becomes established — it is very hard to dislodge it.

ME/CFS – a nice medical statement for work

I have been on long term disability for ME/CFS, had to deal with school boards for children with ME/CFS and often seen ad-hoc reports created by well meaning MDs. These situations are often legal situations and not medical treatment scenarios — I have seen reports missing the mark — often, making it more difficult to get needed and appropriate support.

Personally I really like page 4: “11.l To what degree can your patient tolerate work stress?”

The 4 page form below was shared by a friend, and I am reposting it here because I believe many people would benefit from it. I would love to see it translated into other languages (if you translate it — please send it to me as a word document and I will include it on my site).

Link to a Word version of the above.

Spam, spam, spam – Gupta!

I got this on my facebook page:



Given how long this program been running, I would expect studies and results on PubMed — there are ZERO — opps wrong, see bottom.

Their site banners: “Gupta Program Brain Retraining™ Is A Powerful Revolutionary New Program For Chronic Conditions.”

  • ah, brain retraining — these conditions are all in your head!
  • Success stories — two key phrases: Placebo Effect, Lack of external verification of testimonies,

Testimonies are meaningless without a control study (ideally published on PubMed — where there is nothing). Of 1000 people who signed off, with MD verified medical condition X, what was the result? For many published studies, I see 15% of control group improved (your testimony!!) and 28% of those on treatment.

Bottom Line

Lack of peer-reviewed published control studies – means a big thumb down for the scientist writing here..

Addendum

A reader found some studies were on pubmed which I could not filter from studies done by other Guptas!.

 “a novel hypothesis for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is proposed….
followed by the patient’s experience of the illness. ”

Gupta, A. (2002). Unconscious amygdalar fear conditioning in a subset of chronic fatigue syndrome patients. Medical Hypotheses 59(6), 727–735 [2002]

Note that this is proposing a hypothesis based on a single patient’s experience.

Of the 44 patients randomly assigned who completed baseline assessments, 21 patients completed the study (14 in the standard care group and 7 in the study group). Median age was 48 years (range, 27-56 years), and female subjects comprised 91% of the group. Analyses demonstrated statistically significant improvements in scores for physical health, energy, pain, symptom distress, and fatigue in patients who received the amygdala retraining compared with standard care.

Toussaint et al. (2012).A mind-body technique for symptoms related to fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. Explore (NY). 2012 Mar-Apr;8(2):92-8. doi: 10.1016/j.explore.2011.12.003.

So, 7 of 44 completed the study. All of the measures were subjective self reporting (thus very prone to placebo effect)

I suffered from ME (chronic fatigue syndrome) for three years. I spent years researching this mysterious illness to understand the causes, focusing on the brain neurology of conditioned traumas in the amygdala. I cured myself of the condition and wrote a medical hypothesis as to the cause of ME which was published in 2002. …

Limitations No control group or placebo group was used, and future studies would need to incorporate this. No standardised tools were used, and randomised collection was not employed. Researcher bias, and the effects of researcher/ practitioner enthusiasm, were significant confounding factors, as were participants’ possible use of concurrent therapies. Sample bias was significant in that those completing the programme may have shown more motivation and commitment.

Can amygdala retraining techniques improve the wellbeing of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome – A clinical audit of subjective outcomes in a small sample. Journal of holistic healthcare, 7(2).