Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from Nutrition Journal and BioMed Central.

Open Access Research

Synbiotic therapy decreases microbial translocation and inflammation and improves immunological status in HIV-infected patients: a double-blind randomized controlled pilot trial

Luz A González-Hernández1, Luis F Jave-Suarez3, Mary Fafutis-Morris2, Karina E Montes-Salcedo1, Luis G Valle-Gutierrez1, Ariel E Campos-Loza1, Luis Fermin Enciso-Gómez1 and Jaime F Andrade-Villanueva1*

Author affiliations

1 HIV Unit Hospital Civil de Guadalajara “Fray Antonio Alcalde”, University of Guadalajara, Calle Hospital 278, Colonia Alcalde Barranquitas, Guadalajara, Jalisco, 44280, Mexico

2 Centro Universitario de Ciencias de la Salud (CUCS), UdeG, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico

3 Centro de Investigación Biomédicas de Occidente (CIBO), Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS), Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico

For all author emails, please log on.

Citation and License

Nutrition Journal 2012, 11:90  doi:10.1186/1475-2891-11-90

Published: 29 October 2012

Abstract

Background

HIV-infection results in damage and dysfunction of the gastrointestinal system. HIV enteropathy includes pronounced CD4+ T-cell loss, increased intestinal permeability, and microbial translocation that promotes systemic immune activation, which is implicated in disease progression. A synbiotic is the combination of probiotics and prebiotics that could improve gut barrier function. Our study goal was to determine whether the use of a synbiotic, probiotics or a prebiotic can recover immunological parameters in HIV-infected subjects through of a reduction of microbial translocation and pro-inflammatory cytokine production.

Methods

A randomized, double-blind controlled study was performed; twenty Antiretroviral treatment-naïve HIV-infected subjects were subgrouped and assigned to receive a synbiotic, probiotics, a prebiotic, or a placebo throughout 16 weeks.

Results

We had no reports of serious adverse-events. From baseline to week 16, the synbiotic group showed a reduction in bacterial DNA concentrations in plasma (p = 0.048). Moreover, the probiotic and synbiotic groups demonstrated a decrease in total bacterial load in feces (p = 0.05). The probiotic group exhibited a significant increment of beneficial bacteria load (such as Bifidobacterium; p = 0.05) and a decrease in harmful bacteria load (such as Clostridium; p = 0.063). In the synbiotic group, the CD4+ T-cells count increased (median: +102 cells/μL; p = 0.05) and the level of Interleukin 6 cytokine decreased significantly (p = 0.016).

Conclusions

Our study showed a significant increase in CD4+ T lymphocyte levels in the synbiotic group, which could delay the initiation of antiretroviral therapy and decrease costs in countries with limited resources.