2013 Volume 32 Issue 1 Pages 13-21
The effects of oral administration of enteric-coated tablets containing lactoferrin (LF; 100 mg/tablet) and heat-killed Lactobacillus brevis subsp. coagulans FREM BP-4693 (LB; 6×109 bacteria/tablet) on fecal properties were examined in 32 Japanese women (20–60 years of age) with a tendency for constipation (defecation frequency at equal to or less than 10 times/2 weeks) by a double-blind placebo-controlled crossover design. A significant increase in defecation days per week was obserbed in the subjects who ingested the tablets containing LF and LB compared with the placebo group. The number of bifidobacteria in feces also significantly increased compared with the placebo group. In an in vitro study, LF and tryptic hydrolysate of LF, but not peptic hydrolysate of LF, upregulated the growth of Bifidobacterium longum ATCC15707 when added to the culture. These results demonstrate the capability of the enteric-coated tablets containing LF and LB in improving intestinal function and suggest that they have a growth promoting function for bifidobacteria.