01609: Use of Probiotic to Reduce the Symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $97,416
Albert E. Jergens, DVM, PhD; Iowa State University
January 1, 2012 - December 31, 2014

Sponsor(s): American Belgian Malinois Club, American German Shepherd Dog Charitable Foundation, Inc., American Whippet Club, Belgian Sheepdog Club of America, Inc., Briard Club of America Health & Education Trust, English Cocker Spaniel Club of America, English Setter Association of America, Inc., Health & Rescue Foundation of the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen Club of America, Irish Setter Club of America Foundation, Keeshond Anonymous Fund, Labrador Retriever Club, Inc., National Beagle Club, Old English Sheepdog Club of America, Papillon Club of America, Samoyed Club of America Education & Research Foundation, Siberian Husky Club of America, Westie Foundation of America, Inc., Yorkshire Terrier Club of America

Breed(s): Chinook, French Bulldog, Boxer, German Shepherd Dog, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Basenji
Research Program Area: Gastrointestinal Disease
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Idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a common cause of chronic gastrointestinal disease in dogs. Accumulating evidence in human IBD and animal models suggests that imbalances in composition of the intestinal microbiota contribute to the pathogenesis of chronic intestinal inflammation. Recent studies have also shown that dogs with IBD have distinctly different duodenal microbial communities compared to healthy dogs. Current treatments for IBD include the administration of nonspecific anti-inflammatory drugs which may confer serious side effects and do not address the underlying basis for disease, namely, altered microbial composition. Use of probiotics (viable, non-pathogenic bacteria that exert health benefits beyond basic nutrition) offers an attractive, physiologic, and non-toxic alternative to shift the balance to protective species and treat IBD. The aim of the proposed study is to investigate the clinical, microbiologic, and anti-inflammatory effects of probiotic VSL#3 in the treatment of canine IBD. These studies will provide highly relevant insight into the anti-inflammatory effects of probiotics for treatment of human and canine IBD.


White, R., Atherly, T., Guard, B., Rossi, G., Wang, C., Mosher, C., Webb, C., Hill, S., Ackermann, M., Sciabarra, P., Allenspach, K., Suchodolski, J., & Jergens, A. E. (2017). Randomized, controlled trial evaluating the effect of multi-strain probiotic on the mucosal microbiota in canine idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease. Gut Microbes, 8(5), 451–466. https://doi.org/10.1080/19490976.2017.1334754

Pilla, R., Guard, B.C., Blake, A.B., Ackermann, M., Webb, C.; Hill, S., Lidbury, J.A., Steiner, J.M., Jergens, A.E., Suchodolski, J.S. (2021). Long-Term Recovery of the Fecal Microbiome and Metabolome of Dogs with Steroid-Responsive Enteropathy. Animals. 11 (6), 2498. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11092498

Minamoto, Y., Otoni, C. C., Steelman, S. M., Büyükleblebici, O., Steiner, J. M., Jergens, A. E., & Suchodolski, J. S. (2015). Alteration of the fecal microbiota and serum metabolite profiles in dogs with idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease. Gut Microbes, 6(1), 33–47. https://doi.org/10.1080/19490976.2014.997612

Otoni, C. C., Heilmann, R. M., García‐Sancho, M., Sainz, A., Ackermann, M. R., Suchodolski, J. S., … Jergens, A. E. (2018). Serologic and fecal markers to predict response to induction therapy in dogs with idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 32(3), 999–1008. https://doi.org/10.1111/jvim.15123

Rossi, G., Pengo, G., Caldin, M., Palumbo Piccionello, A., Steiner, J. M., Cohen, N. D., … Suchodolski, J. S. (2014). Comparison of Microbiological, Histological, and Immunomodulatory Parameters in Response to Treatment with Either Combination Therapy with Prednisone and Metronidazole or Probiotic VSL#3 Strains in Dogs with Idiopathic Inflammatory Bowel Disease. PLoS ONE, 9(4), e94699. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0094699

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