Author(s): Reid G
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Abstract The microbiota of the vagina form mostly from ascension of microbes from the rectal area. The numbers and types of microbes fluctuates with hormone levels, sexual contact, douching, and diet, yet the basic composition is relatively simple, with lactobacilli dominant in healthy females. The depletion of these organisms in women susceptible to urinary and vaginal infections, raised the question of whether artificial supplementation of lactobacilli could lower infection rates. To date, a 2 strain combination of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 and Lactobacillus reuteri RC-14 have proved to be the most effective at restoring and maintaining a normal vaginal microbiota. Other organisms show promise in resolving diseases that afflict over 1 billion women worldwide each year. The mechanisms involved have not been completely resolved, but seem to include modulation of host immunity, reduction in pathogen ascension from the rectum, and interference with colonization and survival of pathogens.
This article was published in J Clin Gastroenterol
and referenced in Journal of Probiotics & Health