Laboratory of Immunology and Bioinformatics , Institute of Natural and Biological Sciences, Federal University of Triângulo Mineiro , Uberaba , Minas Gerais , Brazil
An introduction of the role of probiotics in human infections and autoimmune diseases.
During the last decades, studies exploring the role of microorganisms inhabiting human body in different scenarios have demonstrated the great potential of modulating them to treat and prevent diseases. Among the most outstanding applications, probiotics have been used for over a century to treat infections and inflammation. Despite the beneficial role of other probiotics, Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species are the most frequently used, and have been effective as a therapeutic option in the treatment/prevention of dental caries, periodontal diseases, urogenital infections, and gastrointestinal infections. Additionally, as gastrointestinal tract harbors a great diversity of microbial species that directly or indirectly modulate host metabolism and immune response, the influence of intestinal microbiota, one of the targets of therapies using probiotics, on the biology of immune cells can be explored to treat inflammatory disorders or immune-mediated diseases. Thus, it is not surprising that probiotics have presented promising results in modulating human inflammatory diseases such as type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease, among others. Hence, the purpose of this review is to discuss the potential of therapeutic approaches using probiotics to constrain infection and development of inflammation on human subjects.