'Good' Bacteria Key to Reducing Bowel Inflammation
Beneficial bacteria may help reverse a cycle of inflammation found in certain inflammatory bowel diseases, researchers recently reported in the journal Nature Immunology. The most common types of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) are Crohn's and ulcerative colitis.
According to researchers, inflammation in the GI tract develops when an inhibitor called NLRP12 is not present. This inflammation then upsets the balance of bacteria in the digestive system further, leading to an abundance of harmful bacteria and lower levels of beneficial bacteria and creating even more inflammation. Adding beneficial bacteria back to the digestive tract can help end this cycle—perhaps leading to a new treatment for IBD.
Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis often have a negative impact on quality of life and can increase colorectal cancer risk. Symptoms include diarrhea, fatigue, and abdominal cramping. Inflammatory bowel diseases are caused by an abnormal immune system reaction to food, bacteria, and other substances found in the intestines.
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