About this Research Topic
Probiotics are “live microorganisms that, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host”. Specific strains especially those from Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium have been introduced as probiotics and have been consumed throughout the world. Probiotics can regulate the microecological balance of the digestive tract, inhibit the growth and adhesion of pathogenic bacteria, and ameliorate inflammation, thereby supporting a healthy digestive tract. Prebiotics are substrates that are selectively utilized by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit and they can also defence against pathogens and modulate gut microbiota. Use of some probiotics and prebiotics is endorsed by robust efficacy evaluations. However, our knowledge on their mechanisms is mainly based on research using in vitro, animal or ex vivo human models and not all mechanisms have been confirmed in humans.
Probiotics and prebiotics function in the intestine via crosstalk with the host and the commensal bacteria in certain ways, which, till now, are not fully understood regarding the specific molecules directly conferring the health benefits, the host targets of these molecules and the signal transduction pathways. The current understanding of the interactions between probiotics, prebiotics, microbiota and pathogens in the gut is insufficient, which limits the application of probiotics and prebiotics. Therefore, the problem that we would like to tackle in this research topic is mainly about the underlying molecular mechanisms by which probiotics and prebiotics exert their beneficial effects, especially in the following aspects: the protective role of probiotics and prebiotics against gastrointestinal pathogens, and the interactions between probiotics and gut pathogens, including toxins produced by intestinal pathogens, the synergy of probiotics and prebiotics in ameliorating intestinal barrier disfunction and the action mode.
In this Research Topic, we welcome original research and review article covering interesting new findings on the Interactions of probiotics, prebiotics, gut microbiota and gut pathogens or their influence on the intestinal immune system. We particularly encourage research that includes:
• Health promotion of probiotics and prebiotics in the gut and the related molecular mechanisms of action.
• Interactions between probiotics and gut pathogens.
• Effects of probiotics and prebiotics on toxins produced by intestinal pathogens.
• Healthy function of nondigestible carbohydrates.
• The synergy of probiotics and prebiotics in their health-promoting effects，the elucidation of the molecular mechanisms or clinical application
• Applied research of probiotics and prebiotics.
Please note that immunity-focused manuscripts will not be considered for peer-review.
Keywords: Probiotics, prebiotics, mechanism, gut health, microbiota
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.