Lactobacillus acidophilus: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lactobacillus acidophilus
L. acidophilus bacteria near vaginal squamous epithelial cells
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Bacteria
Division: Firmicutes
Class: Bacilli
Family: Lactobacillaceae
Genus: Lactobacillus
Species: L. acidophilus
Binomial name
Lactobacillus acidophilus
(Moro 1900)
Hansen & Mocquot 1970

Lactobacillus acidophilus (meaning acid-loving milk-bacterium) is a species in the genus Lactobacillus. L. acidophilus is a homo-fermentative species, fermenting sugars into lactic acid, which grows readily at rather low pH values (below pH 5.0) and has an optimum growth temperature of 30 °C (86 °F)[citation needed]. L. acidophilus occurs naturally in the human and animal gastrointestinal tract, mouth, and vagina.[1]. Some strains of L. acidophilus may be considered to have probiotic characteristics [2]. These strains are commercially used in many dairy products, sometimes together with S. salivarius ssp. thermophilus and Lactobacillus delbrueckii ssp. bulgaricus in the production of acidophilus-type yogurt.

L. acidophilus is part of the normal vaginal flora.[3] The acid produced by L. acidophilus in the vagina may help to control the growth of the fungus Candida albicans, thus helping to prevent vaginal yeast infections. The same beneficial effect has been observed in cases of oral or gastrointestinal Candidiasis infections. Certain spermicides and contraceptive creams can kill L. acidophilus in the vagina, clearing the path to possible yeast infections.


Health effects

Some strains of L. acidophilus have been studied extensively for health effects. Some research has indicated L. acidophilus may provide additional health benefits, including improved gastrointestinal function, a boosted immune system, and a decrease in the frequency of vaginal yeast infections. Some people report L. acidophilus provides relief from indigestion and diarrhea.

There are many types of fermented dairy products that use L. acidophilus. The most familiar to Americans are sweet acidophilus milk and yogurt[citation needed]. Sweet acidophilus milk is consumed by individuals who suffer from lactose maldigestion and intolerance, which occurs when enzymes (lactase) cannot break down lactose(milk sugar) in the intestine[citation needed]. Failure to digest lactose results in discomfort, cramps and diarrhea.[4] A University of Nebraska study found that feed supplemented with L. acidophilus and fed to cattle resulted in a 61% reduction of Escherichia coli 0157:H7. Research has indicated L. acidophilus may be helpful reducing serum cholesterol levels.[5]

Antibiotics taken orally will also kill beneficial bacteria, including L. acidophilus[citation needed]. After a therapy that includes antibiotics, patients are occasionally instructed to take an L. acidophilus treatment in order to recolonize the gastrointestinal tract[citation needed]. To that effect, L. acidophilus is often sold in health stores in pill or powder form as a nutritional supplement[citation needed]}. A part of the claims in favor of such treatment refer to attaining a better digestion thanks to a recovered normal intestinal flora, the ensuing reduction of constipation, while others indicate a link between L. acidophilus and a possible decrease in the incidence of certain diseases, including yeast infections in the upper digestive tract (especially those caused by Candida albicans), other gastrointestinal disorders, and a weakened immune system[citation needed].

Strains with described health effects

Strain Brandname Producer Proven effect in humans
Lactobacillus acidophilus DDS-1 Nebraska Cultures[6]
Lactobacillus acidophilus LA-5 Chr. Hansen
Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM Danisco


  1. ^ "Bacteria Genomes - LACTOBACILLUS ACIDOPHILUS". European Bioinformatics Institute. Retrieved 2007-08-22. 
  2. ^ Ljungh A, Wadström T (2006). "Lactic acid bacteria as probiotics". Curr Issues Intest Microbiol 7 (2): 73–89. PMID 16875422. 
  3. ^ Forsum U, Holst E, Larsson P, Vasquez A, Jakobsson T, Mattsby-Baltzer I (2005). "Bacterial vaginosis--a microbiological and immunological enigma". APMIS 113 (2): 81–90. doi:10.1111/j.1600-0463.2005.apm1130201.x. PMID 15723682. 
  4. ^ de Roos N, Katan M (1 February 2000). "Effects of probiotic bacteria on diarrhea, lipid metabolism, and carcinogenesis: a review of papers published between 1988 and 1998". Am J Clin Nutr 71 (2): 405–11. PMID 10648252. 
  5. ^ Anderson J, Gilliland S (1999). "Effect of fermented milk (yogurt) containing Lactobacillus acidophilus L1 on serum cholesterol in hypercholesterolemic humans". J Am Coll Nutr 18 (1): 43–50. PMID 10067658. 
  6. ^ "About us". Nebraska Cultures. Retrieved 2009-11-07. 

External links


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary




Scientific Latin:

Lactobacillus from lacto- meaning milk, -bacillus meaning rod-like in shape.
acidophilus for acid loving.

Proper noun

Lactobacillus acidophilus


  1. A species of bacteria in the genus Lactobacillus. Sometimes used in the production of yogurt.

Alternative forms

Also known as the Boas-Oppler bacillus after Ismar Isidor Boas, a German gastroenterologist (1858-1938) and Bruno Oppler (-1932) a German physician from Breslau.


Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Lactobacillus acidophilus


Main Page
Superregnum: Bacteria
Regnum: Bacteria
Phylum: Firmicutes
Classis: Bacilli
Ordo: Lactobacillales
Familia: Lactobacillaceae
Genus: Lactobacillus
Species: Lactobacillus acidophilus


Lactobacillus acidophilus Hansen & Mocquot 1970, (Moro 1900)

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