Probiotics and carriage of Streptococcus pneumoniae serotypes in Danish children, a double-blind randomized controlled trial

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This study examined the carriage of Streptococcus pneumoniae in healthy Danish children aged 8-19 months and assessed the effect of the probiotics Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG and Bifidobacterium animalis subsp lactis on the pneumococcal carriage during daycare enrolment. Potential risk factors of pneumococcal carriage were analysed and the carriage study was compared with registered invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) data. This study is a part of the ProbiComp study, which was a double-blind, randomized controlled trial, including 290 children allocated to probiotics or placebo for 6 months and recruited during two autumn seasons (2014/2015). Pneumococci were identified by optochin sensitivity, bile solubility, α-hemolysis and/or capsular reaction. Serotyping was performed by latex agglutination kit and Quellung reaction. The carriage rate of S. pneumoniae was 26.0% at baseline and 67.4% at the end of intervention. No significant difference was observed between the placebo group and the probiotics group (p = 0.508). Children aged 8-19 months were carriers of non-pneumococcal vaccine serotypes causing IPD in children aged 0-4 years. However, serotypes causing most IPD cases in Danish elderly were either not found or found with low prevalence suggesting that children are not the main reservoir of those serotypes and other age groups need to be considered as carriers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number15258
JournalScientific Reports
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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