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College students fit for fight with probiotic strains BB-12® and LGG®

Press release   •   Oct 01, 2012 09:50 UTC

A new study which will be published in the acknowledged scientific journal British Journal of Nutrition indicates that daily intake of Chr. Hansen’s probiotics will help students recover from the common cold quicker.

Students are relatively susceptible to the common cold and other so-called upper respiratory infections due to inadequate sleep, stress and close living quarters. Every year, approximately 55% of US college students experience at least one upper respiratory infection. In a new study an international research team investigated the impact of probiotic supplementation in a group of American college students.

“We know that certain probiotic strains support immune health and may improve health-related quality of life during upper respiratory infections. This study assessed how probiotic supplementation affects duration of symptoms, severity of symptoms, and the impact of symptoms on daily life, when infected,” explains Tracey J. Smith, Adjunct Professor at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (USA), who led the study.

198 college students living on-campus in residence halls at Framingham State University, USA were randomized to receive either placebo (97 students) or a powder blend containing Chr. Hansen’s probiotic strains BB-12® and LGG® (101 students) for 12 weeks. Each day, students completed a survey to assess the effect of the probiotic supplementation.

Duration down by two days – severity down by 34%
The median duration of upper respiratory infections was significantly shorter by two days (four days versus six days), and median severity score was significantly lower by 34% with probiotics versus placebo. Number of missed work days was not different between groups. However, the probiotics group missed 0.2 fewer school days compared to the placebo group.

“In conclusion, the study indicates that BB-12® and LGG® shortens the duration of colds and minimizes the severity for college students, and reduces missed school days,” Chr. Hansen’s Birgit Michelsen, Director of Scientific Affairs, Health & Nutrition Division sums up. “The study findings confirm immune health benefits which we have documented in previous studies and which we are continuously substantiating in our ambitious program of probiotic clinical studies”.

Published in the British Journal of Nutrition
The study “Effect of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (LGG®) and Bifidobacterium animalis ssp lactis (BB-12®) on health-related quality of life in college students with upper respiratory infections” has been accepted for publication in the British Journal of Nutrition and is expected to be published within the next few months.
The study findings were revealed in a poster presentation at the ICAAC, an international conference on antimicrobial agents and infectious diseases, on September 9 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, USA.

Chr. Hansen is a global bioscience company that develops natural ingredient solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. The products include cultures, enzymes, probiotics and natural colors, and all solutions are based on strong research and development competencies coupled with significant technology investments. Revenue in the 2013/14 financial year was EUR 756 million. The company holds a leading market position in all its divisions: Cultures & Enzymes, Health & Nutrition and Natural Colors. It has more than 2,500 dedicated employees in over 30 countries and main production facilities in Denmark, France, USA and Germany. Chr. Hansen was founded in 1874 and is listed on NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen.

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