The protective effect of Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus casei, isolated from fresh cow milk, was studied in vivo. Toxicological data of rat serum revealed that the Lactobacillus isolates had liver improvement functions. Serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activities of the rats dosed with Lactobacillus isolates alone were lower (15.50 and 18.27 iu/l) than the control. There was a reduction in the count of enterobacteria in rats dosed with L. casei after 3 days of feeding trials. Protection of the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) by these isolates was also observed. Histopathological data confirmed partial protection of the GIT in rats dosed with Lactobacillus isolates and simultaneously infected with Escherichia coli. L. casei was generally observed to have a better effect than L. acidophilus in terms of liver function improvement, anticholesterolaemic effect, and reduction of enterobacteria in the GIT.
Key words: Probiotic, protection, Lactobacillus
African Journal of Biotechnology Vol.2(11) 2003: 448-452