Lactobacillus sporogenes, now rechristened as Bacillus coagulansis, is a naturally occurring beneficial bacteria. Medically, it is categorized as a gram-positive, spore-forming, lactic acid producing probiotic. As you may be aware of, probiotics support the growth of friendly and healthy gut bacteria to maintain a healthy balance of microflora in the intestines. Usually consumed for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), diarrhoea, gas, airway infections and many other ailments, it is associated with increased immune system function and elimination of harmful bacteria. 
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines a probiotic as ‘live microorganisms which, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit to the host’. They are responsible for the healthy and safe maintenance of our complex gastric system. 
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What are the health benefits of this probiotic?
The ability of Lactobacillus sporogenes to become dormant during harsh conditions such as the acidic environment in our stomachs, makes it particularly effective at alleviating stomach distress and other ailments. Let us enumerate some other benefits associated with this probiotic spore :
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS): When volunteers with IBS (symptoms included abdominal pain, diarrhoea and constipation) was subjected to Lactobacillus sporogenes, there was significant improvement in the participants.
- Rheumatoid Arthritis: Another study analysed the anti-inflammatory abilities of Lactobacillus sporogenes and its effect on participants with Rheumatoid Arthritis. Volunteers who were exposed to this probiotic reported less disability and showed a reduction in C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker for inflammation.
- Intestinal gas: Patients suffering from flatulence, stomach distension and abdominal pain experienced relief when they were exposed to Lactobacillus sporogenes.
- Respiratory tract infection: Patients administered with this probiotic showed increased T cell production in response to Influenza A and Adenovirus. These cells help to boost the immune system.
Understanding the mechanism of action of this probiotic:
Although in vitro and in vivo studies have generated data, theories on probiotics like Lactobacillus sporogenes still remain speculative. However, these mechanisms determine their mode of action :
- Luminal: Probiotic organisms exude ‘bacteriocins’ that restricts the growth of pathogens or harmful strains. Presence of lactic acid, short chain fatty acids and hydrogen peroxide help to lower the pH and contribute to creating a hostile environment for pathogenic species. Enzymes like ß-galactosidase produced by lactobacilli are useful in preventing diarrhoea.
- Mucosal: Probiotic strains are often able to bind directly to invasive species or to endothelial receptors. Production of ‘defensins’ or cationic proteins help to invade into microbial membranes resulting in lysis. Probiotics influence the proteins that control tight junctions between enterocytes, thus reducing the absorption of harmful macromolecules.
- Submucosal: Pattern Recognition Receptors (PRRs) present on the surface of host cells in the intestine are key points where pathogens bind, resulting in a particular disease. Intake of probiotics stimulates immunoglobulin and modulates the development of Adaptive immune responses, thus saving the body from infection.
Lactobacillus sporogenes has become the focus of research as it is highly tolerant of extreme environments and possesses the above probiotic characteristics. It promotes intestinal digestion via the aid of various enzymes that it produces. Lactobacillus sporogenes also regulates host symbiotic microbiota and inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria vis-a-vis the mechanisms mentioned above. 
Who must not consume Lactobacillus sporogenes?
When consumed orally, Lactobacillus sporogenes is safe. It is a great addition to dietary requirements, especially in children because it facilitates the digestive system to function smoothly and prevents diarrhoea. However, it is always advisable to consult a reputed physician before starting on any course of the probiotic. 
- Pregnant and breast-feeding mothers: There is not enough evidence of safety of this probiotic when one is pregnant or lactating. It is thus best to refrain from its usage during these phases.
- Children: It is probably safe for children too, but a prior consultation of a doctor is mandatory. 
- Antibiotics interact with Lactobacillus sporogenes: Antibiotics are broad spectrum and can destroy all bacteria in the body. It is thus advisable to maintain a gap of at least two hours before/after the antibiotic and the probiotic consumption.
- Reaction with Immuno-suppressants: Probiotics such as Lactobacillus sporogenes boost the immune system and the effect of immuno-suppressants may be completely foiled. 
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Anzen Export’s blog posts have been written with the information gathered from approved medical journals and websites online. Our research and technical team strive to provide relevant information through such articles. To be best informed, we advise consulting a doctor about an ingredient or medicine prior to taking it.