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Lactobacillus paracasei modulates the immune system of Galleria mellonella and protects against Candida albicans infection

  • 2017-03-07
  • PLOS ONE 12(3)
    • R. D. Rossoni
    • B. Fuchs
    • P. P. de Barros
    • Marisol dos Santos Velloso
    • A. O. Jorge
    • J. C. Junqueira
    • E. Mylonakis

Abstract

Probiotics have been described as a potential strategy to control opportunistic infections due to their ability to stimulate the immune system. Using the non-vertebrate model host Galleria mellonella, we evaluated whether clinical isolates of Lactobacillus spp. are able to provide protection against Candida albicans infection. Among different strains of Lactobacillus paracasei, Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Lactobacillus fermentum, we verified that L. paracasei 28.4 strain had the greatest ability to prolong the survival of larvae infected with a lethal dose of C. albicans. We found that the injection of 107 cells/larvae of L. paracasei into G. mellonella larvae infected by C. albicans increased the survival of these insects compared to the control group (P = 0.0001). After that, we investigated the immune mechanisms involved in the protection against C. albicans infection, evaluating the number of hemocytes and the gene expression of antifungal peptides. We found that L. paracasei increased the hemocyte quantity (2.38 x 106 cells/mL) in relation to the control group (1.29 x 106 cells/mL), indicating that this strain is capable of raising the number of circulating hemocytes into the G. mellonella hemolymph. Further, we found that L. paracasei 28.4 upregulated genes that encode the antifungal peptides galiomicin and gallerymicin. In relation to the control group, L. paracasei 28.4 increased gene expression of galiomicin by 6.67-fold and 17.29-fold for gallerymicin. Finally, we verified that the prophylactic provision of probiotic led to a significant reduction of the number of fungal cells in G. mellonella hemolymph. In conclusion, L. paracasei 28.4 can modulate the immune system of G. mellonella and protect against candidiasis.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Lactobacillus paracasei DSM 13434Improved Cell Survival RatesBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei DSM 13434Increased Expression of Antimicrobial Peptide GenesBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei DSM 13434Increased Hemocyte CountBeneficial
Moderate
Lactobacillus paracasei DSM 13434Reduced Fungal LoadBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei HA-196Improved Survival Rate Following InfectionBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei HA-196Increased Antifungal Peptide ProductionBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei HA-196Increased Hemocyte CountBeneficial
Moderate
Lactobacillus paracasei HA-196Reduced Fungal LoadBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei IMC 502Improved Larvae Survival RateBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei IMC 502Increased Antifungal PeptidesBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei IMC 502Increased Hemocyte CountBeneficial
Moderate
Lactobacillus paracasei IMC 502Reduced Fungal Cell CountBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei UALpc-04Improved Cell Survival RatesBeneficial
Large
Lactobacillus paracasei UALpc-04Increased Antifungal Peptides Gene ExpressionBeneficial
Moderate
Lactobacillus paracasei UALpc-04Increased Hemocyte CountBeneficial
Moderate
Lactobacillus paracasei UALpc-04Reduced Fungal Cell CountBeneficial
Large
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