P. freudenreichii produces great-tasting cheese and important vitamins. This bacterium also beneficially modifies our microbiota and has beneficial effects on the GI tract.
What is Propionibacterium freudenreichii?
Propionibacterium freudenreichii is widely used in the food industry, especially as a starter in the production of Swiss-type cheeses such as Emmental and Maasdam. These bacteria are essential for the development of a nutty and sweet flavor, and produce CO2 responsible for the appearance of the typical cheese “holes” .
An estimated one billion living cells of P. freudenreichii are present in one gram of Emmental .
In addition to its traditional use, research has recently focused on health benefits related to P. freudenreichii . It was shown that the consumption of this bacterium modulates the gut microbiota, which makes P. freudenreichii both a probiotic and a prebiotic .
Health Benefits of P. freudenreichii
1) Beneficially Modifies Gut Microbiota
Bifidogenic growth stimulator (BGS) is a prebiotic preparation produced by P. freudenreichii that stimulates the growth of Bifidobacteria 
2) Is Anti-inflammatory
A component from P. freudenreichii suppresses the production of proinflammatory cytokines and attenuates colitis in mice .
3) May be Beneficial in IBD
Propionibacterium freudenreichii was effective in the treatment of mild to moderate ulcerative colitis in a human pilot study .
A component of P. freudenreichii improved survival rate and reduced damage in mice with colitis, by attenuating colonic inflammation through balancing intestinal bacterial flora and suppressing lymphocyte infiltration .
4) Relieves Constipation
5) Binds Toxins
Propionibacterium freudenreichii binds cadmium and lead efficiently at low concentration ranges commonly observed in foods .
6) Combats Cancer
Propionibacterium freudenreichii is able to kill colon cancer cells in rats .
Propionibacteria induce intrinsic apoptosis of colon cancer cells, via the production and release of SCFA (propionate and acetate) acting on mitochondria .
Milk fermented by P. freudenreichii kills human gastric cancer cells and enhances the cytotoxicity of camptothecin, a drug used in gastric cancer chemotherapy .
- Increases butyrate [8, 11] and the amount of Bifidobacteria, Lactobacilli, and Enterobacteriaceae [17, 11].
- Decreases IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α  and increases IL-10 .
P. freudenreichii is widely used in the food industry and considered safe.
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