Monoassociation of Preterm Germ-Free Piglets with Bifidobacterium animalis Subsp. lactis BB-12 and Its Impact on Infection with Salmonella Typhimurium

Alla Splichalova, Sharon M. Donovan, Helena Tlaskalova-Hogenova, Zbynek Stranak, Zdislava Splichalova, Igor Splichal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Preterm germ-free piglets were monoassociated with probiotic Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis BB-12 (BB12) to verify its safety and to investigate possible protection against subsequent infection with Salmonella Typhimurium strain LT2 (LT2). Clinical signs of salmonellosis, bacterial colonization in the intestine, bacterial translocation to mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN), blood, liver, spleen, and lungs, histopathological changes in the ileum, claudin-1 and occludin mRNA expression in the ileum and colon, intestinal and plasma concentrations of IL-8, TNF-α, and IL-10 were evaluated. Both BB12 and LT2 colonized the intestine of the monoassociated piglets. BB12 did not translocate in the BB12-monoassociated piglets. BB12 was detected in some cases in the MLN of piglets, consequently infected with LT2, but reduced LT2 counts in the ileum and liver of these piglets. LT2 damaged the luminal structure of the ileum, but a previous association with BB12 mildly alleviated these changes. LT2 infection upregulated claudin-1 mRNA in the ileum and colon and downregulated occludin mRNA in the colon. Infection with LT2 increased levels of IL-8, TNF-α, and IL-10 in the intestine and plasma, and BB12 mildly downregulated them compared to LT2 alone. Despite reductions in bacterial translocation and inflammatory cytokines, clinical signs of LT2 infection were not significantly affected by the probiotic BB12. Thus, we hypothesize that multistrain bacterial colonization of preterm gnotobiotic piglets may be needed to enhance the protective effect against the infection with S. Typhimurium LT2.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number183
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 11 2021


  • Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis BB-12
  • Immunocompromised
  • Inflammatory cytokines
  • Intestinal barrier
  • Preterm host
  • Salmonella Typhimurium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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