Probiotic Markedly Reduces S. aureus Colonization in Phase 2 Trial; NIH Study Provides New Insights on Role of Gut in Staph Colonization

MRSA (yellow) being ingested by neutrophil (purplish blue). (Credit: NIAID).
A promising approach to control Staphylococcus aureus bacterial colonization in people--using a probiotic instead of antibiotics--was safe and highly effective in a Phase 2 clinical trial. The new study, reported in The Lancet Microbe, found that the probiotic Bacillus subtilis markedly reduced S. aureus colonization in trial participants without harming the gut microbiota, which includes bacteria that can benefit people. The research was conducted by researchers at the National Institutes of Health led by Michael Otto, PhD, an NIH Senior Investigator at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The Lancet article is titled “Probiotic for Pathogen-Specific Staphylococcus aureus Decolonisation in Thailand: A Phase 2, Double-Blind, Randomised, Placebo-Controlled Trial.”
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