Irritable Bowel Syndrome: further evidence towards confirming the value of pro-and prebiotics

A recent review of the scientific literature supports the hypothesis that dysbiosis may be one of the causes of irritable bowel syndrome. This provides justification for further research into the use of prebiotics and probiotics.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal disorder that significantly  affects patients’ quality of life. Although the causes remain unclear, scientists agree that the intestinal microbiota is involved in its onset. Studies have shown that its composition differs from that of healthy people and that adding probiotics could prove effective. As a result, it has become crucial to determine the exact nature of these differences in order to develop a therapeutic strategy to restore the balance of the microbial ecosystem and treat these patients.

Researchers reviewed 170 studies on IBS. Their work showed that, although there is no consensus regarding how the composition of the intestinal microbiota is affected, there is a significant body of evidence indicating that dysbiosis is present in several patient sub-groups. Similarly, despite some contradictory results, a therapeutic approach based on restoring the microbial balance of the intestinal microbiota using probiotics and prebiotics seems to improve IBS symptoms. Researchers advocate for more studies on this multifactorial disease–for which interactions exist between microbiota and host–in order to better understand its pathophysiology and develop effective, personalized strategies.

Sources:

Fan et al. Close association between intestinal microbiota and irritable bowel syndrome. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect 2017