TRIAL: Defence Medical and Environmental Research Institute (DMERI), Singapore
At the Military Physiology Laboratory, Combat Protection and Performance Programme, Defence Medical and Environmental Research Institute (DMERI), Singapore, BioCeuticals® UltraBiotic 45 is being studied for its effects on exercising individuals.
Exercise is known to be associated with alterations in immune responses such as increased plasma pro-inflammatory and anti- inflammatory cytokines, Th1/Th2 imbalance and decreased salivary IgA concentration. In addition, gut permeability is increased in endurance athletes during intense exercise, leading to the translocation of luminal endotoxins into the systemic circulation, which can exacerbate inflammation. Probiotics are beneficial gut bacteria with known immunomodulatory functions. They suppress the growth of pathogenic bacteria in the gut, enhance gut barrier function, stimulate mucosal immunity, and modulate cytokine profiles. Prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates that encourage the growth of these beneficial gut bacteria. Therefore, synbiotics (mixtures of prebiotics and probiotics) are postulated to have enhanced immunoprotective properties. There are limited studies investigating the effects of probiotic or prebiotic supplementation on immune response during strenuous exercise.
The purpose of the trial is to evaluate the effects of synbiotic supplementation on the immune function of athletes. The laboratory has two main research arms, focusing on environmental physiology and human performance. One group within the laboratory is experienced in heat studies and has completed numerous trials that impacted the training protocol of the Singapore Armed Forces. The other group, focusing on human performance, has also completed studies on ergogenic aids (e.g. creatine and caffeine) and exercise immunology, including identifying an alternative pathway for heatstroke.