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Micro-inflammation in the gut, assessed by fecal calprotectin (FC), is considered a component of the pathogenesis of functional diarrhea (FD). Since probiotics may suppress micro-inflammation in the intestine by competing with harmful bacteria, we hypothesized that they would reduce the ratio of loose stool symptoms and gut inflammation in patients with FD. We conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to assess the clinical and laboratory effects of Lactobacillus plantarum CJLP243 in FD patients with elevated FC levels for two months. Twenty-four patients diagnosed with FD with elevated FC levels were randomly assigned to either a probiotic group or a placebo group. After 2 months, 10 patients in the probiotic group and 12 patients in the placebo group completed the study, and FD symptoms, FC values, and intestinal flora were re-evaluated in these subjects. The percentage of subjects who had adequate FD relief (decrease in loose stool frequency) in the probiotic group was significantly increased after two months compared with the baseline. In addition, the probiotic group showed a statistically significant decrease in log-transformed FC values compared with the pre-treatment group, whereas the placebo group showed no difference before and after the intervention. Furthermore, the levels of Leuconostoc genus organisms in the gut microbiota composition in the probiotic group increased significantly after the end of the study compared with the baseline values. In this preliminary exploratory research, we found that two months of Lactiplantibacillus plantarum CJLP243 treatment resulted in FD symptom improvement, reduced FC values, and increased Leuconostoc levels, suggesting that the intake of Lactiplantibacillus plantarum was helpful in those patients. These findings need to be validated via further clinical studies.

Keywords: Lactiplantibacillus plantarum; fecal calprotectin; functional diarrhea; gut microbiota.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Lactiplantibacillus plantarumImproved Functional Diarrhea SymptomsBeneficial
Lactiplantibacillus plantarumIncreased Leuconostoc LevelsBeneficial
Lactiplantibacillus plantarumReduced Fecal Calprotectin LevelsBeneficial
Lactiplantibacillus plantarum KABP™-023Improved Functional Diarrhea SymptomsBeneficial
Lactiplantibacillus plantarum KABP™-023Improved Gut Microbiota DiversityBeneficial
Lactiplantibacillus plantarum KABP™-023Reduced Fecal Calprotectin LevelsBeneficial

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