GLOSSARY AND TERMINOLOGY
QUALITY AND SAFETY INFORMATION
Small peptides of bacterial origin that show bactericidal or bacteriostatic activity towards other bacterial strains (for more information, see Microbiota).
Pleomorphic, non-spore-forming gram-positive bacteria. They are generally obligate anaerobes. Bifidobacteria grow singly, but also in chains or aggregates and have a length ranging from 2 to 5 µm. Microorganisms belonging to this bacterial genus are able to code for 19 of the 20 amino acids of the genetic code. They use dietary oligosaccharides to produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) and are strongly representative of a good eubiosis condition of the gut.
α-diversity indicates the average diversity of species in a habitat (the greater the α-diversity of the microbiota, the richer it is). β-diversity is the relationship of diversity between two different habitats or organisms.
Symbiotic and mutualistic nutritional relationship between two different bacterial species of the microbiota. (for more information, see Microbiota.)
Bidirectional communication between the microbiota and an organ or system (i.e.: the crosstalk between the microbiota and the immune system.)
Microbial imbalance on the surface, or inside the body. The opposite of eubiosis.
Corresponds to the habitat and indicates defined microbiota compositions easily found in the human body and often related to specific health or nutrition conditions.
Good balance and functioning of the microbiota in the gut.
Genus including facultative anaerobic gram-positive bacteria or rod-shaped microaerophilic bacteria. There are about 60 species of Lactobacillus and they make up the bulk of lactic acid bacteria, so called for their ability to digest lactose and other sugars and convert them into lactic acid.
Metagenomic analysis of the metabolites produced by the intestinal microbiota in a specific rea of the body.
The study of the microbiota carried out directly in its habitat by sequencing the entire microbiome (i.e.: metagenomic analysis of the uterine microbiome) and not through normal sampling, isolation and culture techniques.
Characterization of the proteins produced by the intestinal microbiota or by the host in a specific area of the body.
A subset of the microbiota and indicates the set of fungal microorganisms that colonize the body.
The set of microorganisms that colonize the body.
The aggregate of genes and genetic patrimony of the microbiota.
The gelatinous layer where the bacteria of the microbiota proliferate, and which lines the intestine. It consists mainly of mucin and mediates the interactions between bacteria and intestinal epithelium cells.
Operational taxonomic units (OTU)
Definition used to classify groups or clusters of related bacteria.
Metabolic products of bacterial origin. They are released in the body during the fermentation processes of dietary fibers.
Non-digestible substances (mainly fibers like beta-glucans, fructans, fructo-oligosaccharides and inulin) naturally contained in some foods and able to promote bacteria growth in the microbiota.
Living and active microorganisms (especially bacteria) contained in certain foods, or supplements, and in adequate amount to interact with the organism's microbiota. Probiotics, or lactic acid bacteria, are not fermented foods.
Ability of bacterial populations to self-regulate their quantity in a given habitat (for more information, see Microbiota)
Is a genus that includes many species of yeasts, such as Saccharomyces boulardii, a microorganism naturally present in the human gut. Saccharomyces cerevisiae (brewer's yeast) on the contrary is not part of the human mycobiome and if ingested it is usually eliminated by gastric secretions.
SCFA (short-chain fatty acids)
Saturated fatty acids composed of less than 6 carbon atoms. They represent one of the main fermentation products of the microbiota and are involved in the homeostasis of the organism. The primary ones are butyric, isobutyric, acetic and propionic acids.
Indicates the date beyond which the quantity of microorganisms contained in a food or product is no longer guaranteed.
A condition of mutual interaction by humans with their own microbiota and vice versa.
indicates a group of different strains of bacteria with a high degree of genetic similarity to each other. For example, within the Lactobacillus genus, Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus rhamnosus are two different bacterial species. On the other hand, Lactobacillus acidophilus LA 14 is a strain.
CFU (colony-forming unit):
Indicates the number of bacteria that make up a colony and is used as a unit of measurement for the quantity of microorganisms contained in a product.
16s Ribosomal RNA
Component of the 30S subunit of a prokaryotic ribosome. This subunit is very well-preserved over time and it is used to reconstruct bacterial phylogeny and distinguish different bacterial species and strains.
A subset of the microbiota and indicates the set of viruses that proliferate in the body.
Strain libraries are like seed banks, cryobanks or microbiological laboratories that collect, store and catalogue different strains of bacteria as they are discovered and genotyped. Among the best-known strain libraries are the American Type Culture Collection Center (ATCC) or the Collection Nationale de Cultures de Microorganismes (CNCM) at the Institut Pasteur. Example: Bifidobacterium breve B3 ATCC-SD5206, where Bifidobacterium indicates the genus, breve the species, B3 the strain and ATCC-SD5206 indicates that the strain is deposited at the American Type Culture Collection Center under code SD5206.
HMP (Human Microbiome Project)
The Human Microbiome Project is one of the most ambitious projects for genotyping the human microbiota. It is an initiative of the US National Institutes of Health and its aim is to identify and characterise microorganisms and their relationship to human health and disease. It is a five-year project with a total budget of $115 million.
Components of the outer cell membrane of Gram-negative bacteria. They consist of 3 main regions: lipid A, an oligosaccharide core and antigen O. Lipid A represents the bacterial endotoxin with toxic and pro-inflammatory action on the body.
Like HMP, Metahit (Metagenomics of the Human Intestinal Tract) is a project, funded by the European Commission, involving 15 different research institutes from 8 different countries. It started with the idea of exploring the genetic potential of the human microbiota and understanding its impact on the health and well-being of the body.
TERRENO DI COLTURA
Culture media are solid or liquid solutions containing nutrients on which bacterial cells can be grown or 'cultured'. Each culture medium has an adequate concentration of nutrients, in particular sources of carbon, nitrogen and mineral salts, and the right pH level and humidity. The human body, with its varied diet and appropriate pH, temperature, and humidity levels, is the ideal medium for the bacteria that have always proliferated in it. Therefore, it is important to use supplements with human-derived lactic acid bacteria.
Why are there diverse formulations using different bacteria?
The bacteria of the gut microbiota are all different from each other and perform different functions in different areas of our body. Your trusted healthcare professional can help you choose the most suitable Bromatech product for your own gut.
Why are there no more than four bacterial strains in Bromatech food supplements?
During the development and study of the most efficient formulations for the past 25 years we discovered that bacteria which are “friendly” with humans, are not always friendly with each other. So, we think it is better to use just a few bacterial strains that get along with each other, than it is to use too many and risk starting a civil war in your gut!
What amount of microorganisms do Bromatech food supplements contain?
Bacteria are living organisms and subject to constant decay. According to the World Health organization (WHO) a dose must contain one billion living bacteria of each strain present in the product in order to be considered beneficial in terms of efficacy. The shelf-life of our products is calculated to ensure the living bacterial content of Bromatech food supplements meets or exceeds this requirement. There is no definitive scientific evidence to support the idea that a more elevated living bacteria content enhances the benefits of the supplements.
What is the origin of the bacteria contained in Bromatech food supplements?
All bacteria contained in Bromatech food supplements are human-origin strains . Our research and product development of high-performance dietary supplements over the past 25 years has shown that only human-origin bacterial strains are able to adapt and resist for any length of time in the human intestine. Dairy-origin bacterial strains, for example, may perform more rapidly, but they cannot form permanent colonies. To each its own bacteria!
Are the strains contained in Bromatech food supplements safe?
All strains contained in Bromatech food supplements meet the safety standards defined by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the US Food and Drug administration (FDA).
Are the bacteria in Bromatech food supplements alive or dead?
There are no dead, heat-killed (tyndallized) or spore-forming bacteria present in our products. All strains are alive and viable and able to activate once they enter the gastrointestinal tract.
Are the bacteria in Bromatech food supplements able to resist gastric juices unscathed?
Yes, they can resist gastric juices, bile salts, pancreatin and pepsin. They also possess the ability to adhere to the cells that of gastrointestinal epithelium (gastrointestinal lining).
Should Bromatech food supplements be taken before or after a meal?
Our over 25 years of experience in research and product development of high-performance food supplements leads us to recommend taking our supplements either with, or just after, a meal, except for PILOREX, which can be taken before. The bacteria feed on that which we eat and for this reason we recommend combining our dietary supplements with a balanced, varied diet particularly rich in fiber.
Is it possible to dilute Bromatech food supplements in a liquid?
In general, Bromatech food supplement capsules should be taken as they are. However, if this is not possible, or on the advice of your trusted health professional, the capsules can be opened, and the contents diluted in liquids like fruit juices, milkshakes, yoghurt, creams and smoothies. The contents can also be dissolved in milk, or milk powder, provided the liquid is cool, or just slightly warm. If diluted with water, the solution will become cloudy. The liquid should be consumed shortly after adding the capsule content to avoid a loss of bacterial load.
Do Bromatech food supplements contain gluten or lactose?
Bromatech food supplements do not contain gluten, or lactose and can be safely consumed by people intolerant to these substances.
Are Bromatech food supplements suitable for people who have problems swallowing?
Yes, the elderly, children, or anyone else with swallowing problems can open the capsules and dilute the contents in liquids such as fruit juice or yoghurt. However, it is advisable to consume the liquid immediately after doing so. (See point 9.)
Are Bromatech food supplements suitable for people following prescribed drug therapies?
Yes, Bromatech food supplements can be taken without any problems, even with prescribed drug therapies, but in such cases, it is always better to consult with your doctor before doing so.
Can Bromatech food supplements be taken during pregnancy?
Yes, Bromatech food supplements can be taken without any problems, even during pregnancy, but for greater safety, you should consult with your doctor before doing so.
Can Bromatech food supplements cause side effects?
There are no known undesirable side-effects associated with taking lactic acid bacteria based dietary supplements. Slight, temporary changes in intestinal motility are rare and may simply be caused by the composition of one's bacterial flora returning to normal.
Can Bromatech food supplements be taken while on the go?
Yes. However, it is advisable to keep them in a cool and dry place during the journey. The microorganisms in Enterelle, however, are very resistant to even significant variations in temperature and humidity.
What is the best way to store Bromatech food supplements?
The bacteria contained in Bromatech foodsupplements are activated at temperatures above 30 ° C and in the presence of humidity. Therefore, it is advisable to store the products in dry places with temperatures below 25 ° C. As an added precaution, you can keep them in your refrigerator.
Where can Bromatech food supplements be purchased?
In Switzerland, Bromatech food supplements can only be purchased in pharmacies and drugstores.
A quality bacterial strain is of human origin, therefore species-specific. Only human strains are able to grow in the human body and generate long-term effects. Plant or animal derived strains can be excellent organisms—cheap, easy to find and useful for the industrial production of fermented foods like yoghurt—but they are often unable to resist gastric juices or form stable colonies in the gut. Bromatech carefully selects every single strain. Our dietary supplements contain only human-origin Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria.
Correct choice of blend
1 + 1 = 2 is not always true in microbiology. Even though they are each beneficial to us, if different strains of bacteria are included in the same formulation, often they can begin to compete with each other, leading to mutual elimination, or causing a “bacterial war” to break out in our intestine. There is no general guideline for determining the correct number of different bacterial strains to include in any particular formulation and often compounds with one or two bacteria are more effective than those with many different bacteria. The solution simply lies in the correct choice of the components. Before placing a new product, or its reformulation, on the market, we always carry out a long phase of experimentation in order to provide the consumer with the most synergistic, effective and correct blend with respect to the different microbiological characteristics of our microorganisms.
We tend to believe that the higher the quantity, the stronger the effect. This is true when it comes to pharmacological active ingredients, which are absorbed, distributed in the body, metabolized and finally eliminated. In microbiology, however, the initial quantity is only one of the many variables influencing the growth of a bacterial colony and its impact on the microbiota. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Organization of Gastroenterology (WGO) indicate 1 billion colony forming units (CFU) per daily dose as the standard amount necessary to have an effect on health. There is no scientific evidence that higher quantities correspond to a greater effect. Probiotics contain live bacteria, the concentration of which can fluctuate during storage, making it difficult to ensure an accurate quantity at maturity. Bromatech chooses transparency: we respect the guidelines provided by the authorities and guarantee that our products still contain at least 1 billion CFU per daily dose at expiration date (without indicating different quantities not verifiable by the consumer).
Only living, viable bacteria are able to form colonies and thrive in our body for a long period of time. To ensure our products reach their expiration date with at least 1 billion CFU per daily dose, it is essential to use suitable packaging that, starting from the production phase, does not undergo heating or handling processes that could compromise the vitality of the bacteria. It is also important to store lactic acid bacteria in a cool and dry place, as humidity during storage is also detrimental to the vitality of the bacteria. At Bromatech we not only evaluate the best bacterial mix, but we also ensure optimal storage conditions for our microorganisms by eliminating harmful moisture. The lactic acid bacteria are freeze-dried before being added to the capsules along with other low-humidity components like prebiotics, active ingredients and excipients that have also been evaluated as to type and correct proportions.
Gastric transit resistance
Designing the correct formulation is only the first step to produce a good lactic acid bacteria dietary supplement. The choice of bacteria that are not only alive and vital, but also able to overcome the body’s “entry barriers” like gastric acidity and bile salts in appreciable quantities is essential. While most first-generation yoghurts and lactic acid bacteria are not able to resist stomach acid (pH <3), modern lactic acid bacteria of the fourth and last generation of non-microencapsulated, high-performance super-strains have been selectively developed to survive gastric transit in large quantities and not only. These bacteria are also able to resist mechanical stress and have a long shelf life. In our laboratories we select only microorganisms from highly qualified producers that are able to overcome all the natural defenses of our body and reach the gut unscathed in high quantities (> 80-90%).
Lactic acid bacteria and clinical safety
All bacteria and yeasts used for clinical, or food purposes have been widely studied—starting from their discovery until today—to determine if their consumption involves any risk to human health. The US Federal Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) both employ a safety status mechanism—Generally Regarded as Safe (GRAS) in the USA and Qualified Presumption of Safety (QPS) in Europe—which certifies a presumption of safety of a specific strain in all medical consumption situations, with some exceptions. The consumption of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium is mostly allowed in all pathological conditions. A further usage guideline regards consumption during antibiotic treatment. It is generally recognized that the only strains which can be taken during an antibiotic therapy without losing vitality are S. boulardii and a few species of Enterococcus faecium. All other lactic acid bacteria can be generally taken only at the end of antibiotic therapy. Bromatech not only complies with the safety guidelines provided by the regulatory authorities, but also commits to using only bacterial strains that have demonstrated clinical efficiency and safety and have received internationally recognized status.
Adhesion of the bacterial strain and interaction with the gut microbiota
Once the lactic acid bacteria have reached their "ecological niche" in the intestine, they must be able to multiply and form long-term, stable colonies. The ability to adhere to the intestinal epithelium depends on the composition of the fatty acids present on the cell membrane of the bacteria. This composition reflects their origin, which is the primary reason why the use of human-origin bacteria is essential, as only bacteria that have evolved to adapt to the human epithelium are able to find their habitat in the human gut and interact with the resident microbial communities. This rich, nearly 1½ kilograms of microbial wealth in our gut is fundamental for keeping us healthy and the bacteria supplied through food supplementation have the "mission" of modulating its composition. Ample microbiological analysis of adhesion to the human intestinal epithelium in order to identify bacteria with high adhesion capacity is one of the cornerstones of our research. We also select only strains that have been shown to be able to interact constructively with our microbiota and create products that are able to produce only specific, targeted alterations of this very important microcosm.
Experience and Know-how
Last but not least. The production of a high-quality probiotic requires technical expertise and precision, but the choice of a proper probiotic blend should be made following the advice of professionals and not on a do-it-yourself basis, as this approach rarely leads to satisfactory results. It should be considered that each person’s body response to probiotic is individual and depends on many factors such as diet, stress, simultaneous consumption of other pharmaceuticals and, obviously, the state of health of own microbiota. Bromatech has specialized exclusively in the research, development and production of probiotics for over 25 years. We continuously improve, refine and update out products to make them more effective. During our numerous training courses, we also rely exclusively on qualified, highly trained health professionals to advise consumers regarding the probiotic most suitable for their own gut.