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Mobilizing the Gut microbiome to fight viruses

Posted on24 Aug 2021
The findings presented at the World Microbe Forum, the American Society for Microbiology (ASM), and the Federation of European Microbiological Societies (FEMS) as well as other societies by researchers from Yonsei University in South Korea, demonstrates a potentially new approach to fighting the treating the virus responsible for the current global coronavirus pandemic. This hypothesis was derived from the fact that previous clinical findings have shown that patients with moderate to severe COVID-19 may show gastrointestinal symptoms, while others showed signs of infection solely in the lungs.

However, mounting clinical evidence suggests that microbes in the gastrointestinal system often play key roles in the severity of illnesses from chronic to acute diseases ranging from neurological to respiratory infections.

Indeed, gut flora in particular is gaining increasing interest due to its potential benefits in maintaining healthy microbe diversity and abundance.

To investigate whether gut microbes play a role in fighting SARS-CoV-2, the researchers screened dominant bacteria inhabiting the gut for activity against SARS-CoV-2. Their search revealed that Bifidobacteria, previously shown to suppress other bacteria such as H. pylori and have proven active against irritable bowel syndrome, had such anti-Covid activity.

Finding microbes that secrete anti-coronavirus molecules will be a promising method to develop natural or engineered probiotics to expand our therapeutics prevention techniques, to provide a more sustainable way to combat the viral infection," Using the two-pronged approach of developing effective models combined with clinical trials of probiotics could provide key insights into how microbes may limit the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

Although this may not prevent individuals from being infected, viral replication and symptom severity may be reduced through such treatments. Moreover, recovery capacity could also be enhanced, which could be particularly beneficial in high-risk patients, further supporting the potential for microbial approaches as promising candidates in the fight against coronavirus.

Source: News Medical Life Sciences

Probiotics have shown to help replenish and re-populate good microbes in the gastrointestinal system, thus supplementing your digestive tract with probiotics goes a very long way. 

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