Entries by KC

Episode 2: Why mechanistic research on probiotics is captivating and important

The Science, Microbes & Health Podcast  This podcast covers emerging topics and challenges in the science of probiotics, prebiotics, synbiotics, postbiotics and fermented foods. This is the podcast of The International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotic (ISAPP), a nonprofit scientific organization dedicated to advancing the science of these fields. Why mechanistic research on probiotics […]

Episode 1: The science of fermented foods, part 1

The Science, Microbes & Health Podcast  This podcast covers emerging topics and challenges in the science of probiotics, prebiotics, synbiotics, postbiotics and fermented foods. This is the podcast of The International Scientific Association for Probiotics and Prebiotic (ISAPP), a nonprofit scientific organization dedicated to advancing the science of these fields. The science of fermented foods, […]

The gut mycobiome and misinformation about Candida

By Prof. Eamonn Quigley, MD, The Methodist Hospital and Weill Cornell School of Medicine, Houston As a gastroenterologist, I frequently meet with patients who are adamant that a Candida infection is the cause of their ailments. Patients experiencing a range of symptoms, including digestive problems, sometimes believe they have an overgrowth of Candida in their […]

Improving the quality of microbiome studies – STORMS

By Mary Ellen Sanders, PhD, ISAPP Executive Science Officer In mid-March I attended the Gut Microbiota for Health annual meeting. I was fortunate to participate in a short workshop chaired by Dr. Geoff Preidis MD, PhD, a pediatric gastroenterologist from Baylor College of Medicine and Dr. Brendan Kelly MD, MSCE, an infectious disease physician and […]

ISAPP’s Guiding Principles for the Definitions of ‘Biotics’

By Mary Ellen Sanders, PhD, ISAPP Executive Science Officer Articulating a definition for a scientific concept is a significant challenge. Inevitably, scientists have different perspectives on what falls inside and outside the bounds of a term. Prof. Glenn Gibson, ISAPP co-founder and longtime board member, recently published a paper that describes his path to coining […]

Domestic horses from different geographical locations harbor antibiotic resistant gut bacteria, unlike their wild counterparts

By Dr. Gabriel Vinderola, PhD,  Associate Professor of Microbiology at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering from the National University of Litoral and Principal Researcher from CONICET at Dairy Products Institute (CONICET-UNL), Santa Fe, Argentina It all started on the 12-hour ferry trip that links Turku with Stockholm during one of the last still warm- summer […]

Bacterial genes lead researchers to discover a new way that lactic acid bacteria can make energy and thrive in their environments

Lactic acid bacteria are an important group of bacteria associated with the human microbiome. Notably, they are also responsible for creating fermented foods such as sauerkraut, yogurt, and kefir. In the past two decades, culture-independent techniques have allowed scientists to sequence the genomes of these bacteria and discover more about their capabilities. Researchers studying a […]

Decoding a Probiotic Product Label

By Mary Ellen Sanders, PhD Interested in knowing what’s in your probiotic product? Unfortunately, there are many ways that probiotic product labels can fall short. First, not all items labeled as “probiotic” truly meet the scientific criteria for a probiotic product. See here for information on what qualifies as a probiotic. Some fermented foods are […]

ISAPP begins its search for the next executive director

By Mary Ellen Sanders, PhD When Glenn Gibson, Irene Lenior-Wijnkoop and I first kicked around the idea of an organization for scientists and dedicated to science of probiotics and prebiotics (in 1999), I don’t think any of us would have anticipated that in 2022 that organization would be celebrating its 20th anniversary. But I do […]

ISAPP awards the Glenn Gibson Early Career Research Prize to two diet and gut health researchers

The ISAPP board of directors is pleased to announce that the 2022 Glenn Gibson Early Career Research Prize has been awarded to two promising researchers in the field of probiotics, prebiotics and related substances. Dr. Martin Laursen, Senior Researcher at the National Food Institute, Technical University of Denmark, has demonstrated excellence in his work on […]

Do fermented foods contain probiotics?

By Prof. Maria Marco, PhD, Department of Food Science & Technology, University of California, Davis We frequently hear that “fermented foods are rich in beneficial probiotics.” But is this actually true? Do fermented foods contain probiotics? The quick answer to this question is no – fermented foods are generally not sources of probiotics. Despite the […]

Pasteurized Akkermansia muciniphila as a postbiotic: EFSA approval and beyond

By Prof. Seppo Salminen, University of Turku, Finland Earlier this year, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) delivered an opinion that heat-treated Akkermansia muciniphila is safe for use as a novel food in the European Union. EFSA described A. muciniphila as a “well‐characterised non‐toxin producing, avirulent microorganism that has been reported as part of normal […]

ISAPP’s 2021 year in review

By Mary Ellen Sanders, PhD, ISAPP Executive Science Officer The upcoming year-end naturally leads us to reflect about what has transpired over the past 12 months. From my perspective working with ISAPP, I witnessed ISAPP board members and the broader ISAPP community working creatively and diligently to find solutions to scientific challenges in probiotics, prebiotics […]

ISAPP board members give a scientific overview of synbiotics in webinar

Many kinds of products are labeled as synbiotics – but how do they differ from each other? And do they all meet the scientific criteria for synbiotic ingredients? To demystify the science of synbiotics – including ISAPP’s definition published in 2020 – ISAPP is holding a free webinar: Synbiotics: Definitions, Characterization, and Assessment. Two ISAPP […]

Research on the microbiome and health benefits of fermented foods – a 40 year perspective

By Prof. Bob Hutkins, PhD, University of Nebraska Lincoln, USA Many ISAPPers remember when fermented foods attracted hardly any serious attention from scientists outside the field. Certainly, most clinicians and health professionals gave little notice to fermented foods. In the decades before there were artisan bakeries and microbreweries proliferating on Main Street USA, even consumers […]

Lactobacilli dominate the vagina in Belgian women

By Prof. Sarah Lebeer, Research Professor in Microbiology and Molecular Biology, Department of Bioscience Engineering, University of Antwerp, Belgium A little over a year ago, I wrote an ISAPP blog post about the setup of our Isala citizen science project on women’s health. Now, I can proudly say that we have the first results. Last […]

Current issues in probiotic quality: An update for industry

By Dr. Mary Ellen Sanders, ISAPP, Dr. Kit Goldman, USP, Dr. Amy Roe, P&G, Dr. Christina Vegge, Dr. Jean Schoeni, Eurofins With probiotic dietary supplement use growing globally and an increasing array of products on the market, probiotic quality is an issue of perpetual relevance to industry. Best practices for producing high-quality probiotics change frequently, […]

The American College of Gastroenterology recommends against use of probiotics for primary or secondary prevention of C. difficile

By Prof. Daniel Merenstein MD, Georgetown University School of Medicine and Prof. Eamonn Quigley MD FRCP FACP MACG FRCPI,  Houston Methodist Hospital and Weill Cornell Medical College The American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) recently published ACG Clinical Guidelines: Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Clostridioides difficile Infections. This review considers probiotics for prevention of CDI. The […]

The USDA Global Branded Food Products Database is Now Accepting Data on Live Microbes – Call for Data Submission

Marie E. Latulippe, MS, RDN, Director of Science Programs and Brienna Larrick, PhD, PMP Scientific Program Manager, Institute for the Advancement of Food and Nutrition Sciences (IAFNS), Washington DC As noted by Marco et al. (2020), evidence from observational studies and randomized controlled trials suggests that the consumption of safe, live microbes can support health. […]

Should the concept of postbiotics make us see probiotics from a new perspective?

By Dr. Gabriel Vinderola, PhD,  Associate Professor of Microbiology at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering from the National University of Litoral and Principal Researcher from CONICET at Dairy Products Institute (CONICET-UNL), Santa Fe, Argentina In early May 2021 an ISAPP consensus panel  defined postbiotics as “a preparation of inanimate microorganisms and/or their components that confers […]

Virtual events continue to fill gaps as in-person meetings are being planned

Prof. Bob Hutkins, PhD, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, USA For scientists, annual meetings provide coveted opportunities to hear about the latest scientific advances from expert researchers, and they are where students and trainees get to present their research, often for the first time. Of course, meeting and socializing with colleagues, both new and old, […]

Using probiotics to support digestive health for dogs

By Kelly S. Swanson, PhD, The Kraft Heinz Company Endowed Professor in Human Nutrition, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA Because dogs are considered to be members of the family by most pet owners today, their health and well-being is a top priority. As with humans, nutritional products supporting gastrointestinal health are some of the […]

Do antibiotics ‘wipe out’ your gut bacteria?

By Dr. Karen Scott, University of Aberdeen, UK Antibiotics have been an important tool in medicine to kill pathogenic bacteria and treat infectious diseases for many decades. But for most of those decades, scientists had limited awareness of the community of ‘good’ microbes that reside in our guts and other parts of the body. Now […]