Do probiotics prevent colonization with multi-resistant Enterobacteriaceae during travel? A randomized controlled trial

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BACKGROUND: Travelers to India are often colonized with extended-spectrum beta-lactamase producing Enterobacteriaceae (ESBL-E) or Carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae (CPE). The aim of this study was to investigate if the probiotic species Lactobacillus Rhamnosus GG (LGG) could prevent the colonization of the gut with multi-drug resistant bacteria.

METHODS: Adult Danish travelers traveling to India for 10-28 days were randomized to receive either LGG or no probiotics during travel. Rectal swabs and questionnaires were obtained before travel, immediately after and six months after return. Swaps were screened for the presence of ESBL-E and CPE.

RESULTS: 31 travelers were randomized to the LGG group and 30 to the control group. Before traveling, 6/50 (12.0%) were colonized with ESBL-E. After return, 41/44 (93.2%) of those not colonized before travel were colonized and 11/36 (30.6%) were still colonized after six months. There was no statistically significant difference in the colonization rate between the group receiving LGG and the control group. No CPE was detected in any cases.

CONCLUSIONS: The study confirms the very high incidence of colonization with ESBL-E associated with travel to India with >90% colonized upon return and one third were intestinal carriers for at least six months. Use of LGG did not have any effect on the risk of colonization with ESBL-E.

Original languageEnglish
JournalTravel Medicine and Infectious Disease
Pages (from-to)81-86
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2019

    Research areas

  • CPE, Colonization, ESBL-E, India, Probiotic, Traveler, CARRIAGE, ACQUISITION, ESCHERICHIA-COLI, LACTAMASE-PRODUCING ENTEROBACTERIACEAE, RISK, Prospective Studies, Enterobacteriaceae/drug effects, Humans, Middle Aged, Probiotics/administration & dosage, Male, Incidence, Drug Resistance, Multiple, Bacterial, Adult, Female, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Risk Factors, Intestines/microbiology, Bacterial Proteins, Travel, Feces/microbiology, beta-Lactamases, Enterobacteriaceae Infections/prevention & control, Diarrhea/prevention & control

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