A combination of lactic acid bacteria regulates Escherichia coli infection and inflammation of the bovine endometrium

Sandra Genís, Alejandro Sánchez-Chardi, Àlex Bach, Francesc Fàbregas, Anna Arís

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    © 2017 American Dairy Science Association Uterine function in cattle is compromised by bacterial contamination and inflammation after calving. The objective of this study was to select a combination of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) to decrease endometrium inflammation and Escherichia coli infection. Primary endometrial epithelial cells were cultured in vitro to select the most favorable LAB combination modulating basal tissue inflammation and E. coli infection. Supernatants were obtained to determine expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, and E. coli infection was evaluated after harvesting the tissue and plate counting. The selected LAB combination was tested in uterus explants to assess its capacity to modulate basal and acute inflammation (associated with E. coli infection). The combination of Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Pediococcus acidilactici, and Lactobacillus reuteri at a ratio of 25:25:2, respectively, reduced E. coli infection in vitro with (89.77%) or without basal tissue inflammation (95.10%) compared with single LAB strains. Lactic acid bacteria treatment reduced CXCL8 and IL1B expression 4.7- and 2.2-fold, respectively, under acute inflammation. Ex vivo, the tested LAB combination reduced acute inflammation under E. coli infection, decreasing IL-8, IL-1β, and IL-6 up to 2.2-, 2.5-, and 2.2-fold, respectively. In the total inflammation model, the LAB combination decreased IL-8 1.6-fold and IL-6 1.2-fold. Ultrastructural evaluation of the tissue suggested no direct interaction between the LAB and E. coli, although pathological effects of E. coli in endometrial cells were greatly diminished or even reversed by the LAB combination. This study shows the promising potential of LAB probiotics for therapeutic use against endometrial inflammation and infection.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)479-492
    JournalJournal of Dairy Science
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017


    • endometrium
    • Escherichia coli
    • inflammation
    • lactic acid bacteria


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