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Scientifica
Volume 2015, Article ID 235184, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/235184
Research Article

Effects of the Probiotic Enterococcus faecium and Pathogenic Escherichia coli Strains in a Pig and Human Epithelial Intestinal Cell Model

1Institute of Veterinary Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Freie Universität Berlin, 14163 Berlin, Germany
2Institute of Microbiology and Epizootics, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Freie Universität Berlin, 10115 Berlin, Germany
3Faculty of Natural Sciences, University of Applied Sciences, 01968 Senftenberg, Germany

Received 18 December 2014; Accepted 5 March 2015

Academic Editor: Michael H. Kogut

Copyright © 2015 Ulrike Lodemann et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The aim of this study has been to elucidate the effect of the probiotic Enterococcus faecium NCIMB 10415 on epithelial integrity in intestinal epithelial cells and whether pre- and coincubation with this strain can reproducibly prevent damage induced by enterotoxigenic (ETEC) and enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC). Porcine (IPEC-J2) and human (Caco-2) intestinal epithelial cells were incubated with bacterial strains and epithelial integrity was assessed by measuring transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER) and mannitol flux rates. E. faecium alone increased TEER of Caco-2 cells without affecting mannitol fluxes whereas the E. coli strains decreased TEER and concomitantly increased mannitol flux rates in both cell lines. Preincubation with E. faecium had no effect on the TEER decrease induced by E. coli in preliminary experiments. However, in a second set of experiments using a slightly different protocol, E. faecium ameliorated the TEER decrease induced by ETEC at 4 h in IPEC-J2 and at 2, 4, and 6 h in Caco-2 cells. We conclude that E. faecium positively affected epithelial integrity in monoinfected Caco-2 cells and could ameliorate the damage on TEER induced by an ETEC strain. Reproducibility of the results is, however, limited when experiments are performed with living bacteria over longer periods.