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Biosearch Life researches probiotic bacteria as a new strategy for iron supplementation

Iron deficiency anemia is the most common and widespread nutritional disorder in the world, especially common in infants, children, and pregnant women. Iron is an essential element for life as it is crucial for a number of vital functions such as transporting oxygen from lungs to tissues, electronic transfer or enzymatic oxidation processes. An iron deficiency means that these functions cannot be carried out optimally and that great damage is caused to health.

In this sense, technology developed in previous studies carried out in collaboration with the research group led by Professor José Manuel Domínguez Vera of the Department. of Inorganic Chemistry of the University of Granada (UGR) and protected under the patent application “Probiotic Bacteria comprosing metals, metal nanoparticles and uses thereof” (WO2014/206969) made possible the incorporation of magnetic nanoparticles into probiotic bacteria isolated by Biosearch Life, opening the door to new applications such as the administration of mineral supplements in humans, among others.

In order to evaluate the in vivo effectiveness of these probiotic bacteria loaded with iron nanoparticles, an experiment has been carried out in an animal model of iron deficiency diet-induced iron-deficiency anaemia. The trial was carried out with the collaboration of the research group led by Professor D. Julio Juan Gálvez from the Department of Pharmacology of the UGR.

From the analysis of the data obtained it was deduced that, indeed, the use of probiotic bacteria as carriers of magnetic nanoparticles allows that the release of iron does not occur until reaching the intestine where its absorption takes place. In addition, measured plasma iron and hemoglobin levels indicated that treatment with bacteria loaded with metallic iron oxide nanoparticles is capable of effectively reversing induced anaemia.

These promising results have recently been presented at the IX Workshop of the Spanish Society of Probiotics and Prebiotics (SEPYP), held in Zaragoza on 15 and 16 February 2018, under the oral communication entitled:”Lactobacillus fermentum acts as a carrier of iron oxide nanoparticles: A new strategy for iron supplementation” which was defended by the aforementioned professor D. Julio Juan Gálvez.

The next step, in keeping with the company’s commitment to the scientific sustainability of the products it markets, is to undertake a nutritional intervention trial to corroborate these preclinical results in human volunteers.

Biosearch Life continues to invest heavily in the research and development of new applications for its Hereditum® probiotic strains, such as the use of these in the supplementation of minerals such as iron. This proposal would improve the limitations of some iron supplements in relation to gastrointestinal side effects and low bioavailability.