Good bacteria commonly found in probiotics eliminate staph bacteria

A study by American and Thai researchers revealed that the probiotic bacteria Bacillus eliminates Staphylococcus aureus by interfering with their signaling system. This finding, which was published in the journal Nature, proves that probiotics are crucial to preventing infectious diseases.

  • Many healthcare professionals claim that probiotics are important to maintaining health since they prevent pathogens from colonizing the gut, which leads to a consequent reduction in the risk of acquiring infections. Unfortunately, the underlying mechanism for these effects is still not well-understood.
  • In this study, the researchers observed the effects of Bacillus consumption on the ability of S. aureus to colonize the gut of Thai nationals residing in rural regions of the country. Results showed that samples containing Bacillus had no S. aureus present.
  • From there, the authors proceeded to do mouse studies so that they could determine the underlying mechanism behind this effect.
  • They found that Bacillus prevents colonization by producing a specific class of lipopeptide called fengycins. This lipopeptide interferes with the quorum sensing of S. aureus bacteria, which is a type of signaling system that they use to regulate gene expression in response to population density.

Overall, this study shows that one of the ways through which probiotics reduce the risk of infectious diseases is by interfering with the pathogen’s signaling system so that it won’t be able to produce everything that it needs to survive.

For more articles about the health benefits of probiotics, visit

Journal Reference: 

Piewngam P, Zheng Y, Nguyen TH, Dickey SW, Joo H-S, Villaruz AE, Glose KA, Fisher EL, Hunt RL, Li B, Chiou J, Pharkjaksu S, Khongthong S, Cheung GYC, Kiratisin P, Otto M. PATHOGEN ELIMINATION BY PROBIOTIC BACILLUS VIA SIGNALLING INTERFERENCE. Nature. 10 October 2018;562(7728). DOI: 10.1038/s41586-018-0616-y.

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