Is it worth to experiment with pro-biotics at home?

Is it worth to experiment with pro-biotics at home?

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Let's assume that Joe has done some investigation on Internet and wants to see, if pro-biotics would help him. Now he goes to and buys a pro-biotic product with excellent average rating. Note that not all of the reviews are from "Amazon Verified Purchaser" for the specific product, but you got the point that it sound convincing that other people claim to benefit from the product.

So validity of Joe's pro-biotic experiment starts from pro-biotic supply chain. What are the steps in his pro-biotic experiment where experiment could go wrong; and what are the precautions he can take to make his experiment successful - either prove or disprove their benefits?

In the answer I seek something between lines (feel free to reuse these points to make your answer whole):

  1. Joe should be confident that seller is selling the real thing and not candies. Are there any regulations that ensure that there is no fraud going on at this step from Over-the-Counter seller? How common is such fraud by sellers? Have there been any studies?
  2. The bacteria might die during shipping before Joe actually received his pro-biotics, for example, because of temperature changes. Obviously responsible seller should know how his merchandise should be shipped.
  3. Joe should probably not take pro-biotics together with other drugs or even together with other pro-biotics, because they might kill each other.
  4. There already could be some bacteria living in Joe's body that immediately kills "good bacteria" in pro-biotics without even making it.
  5. And most important - The initial hypothesis found by Joe on Internet about "good bacteria" in pro-biotics was wrong in the first place. Is there a website that I can check with convincing research that has studied how each bacteria affects our body as a whole?

Also, would it be worth to grow culture of pro-biotics at home to make sure that there is bacteria in the first place? How hard that would be? We have microscope at home.

The reason I am asking this is because a person very close to me is super excited about pro-biotics so that it starts to affect my life. I just want to get opinion from people in the biology field on how skeptical they are about DIY people doing such pro-biotic experiments at home. I am not sure yet whether I should support this person or try to talk out of this. It seems that this person has been reading a lot on Internet about this subject so it is not easy for me to argue back.

Beyond Probiotics: 3 Incredible Tools for Healing the Gut Biome

If you follow my articles, you may already know I didn’t get into gut health purely from a place of passion. While I was already into biohacking and deep health science years ago, I really became an expert on the subject as a way to heal myself when I became sick for almost two years.

I never had stomach problems, and my symptoms were primarily mental, including panic attacks, deep anxiety, fatigue, and inability to exercise without mental repercussions (a common trait of chronic fatigue syndrome).

Only when I ha d a deep diagnostic lab panel done did I finally find something officially wrong. Everything up until then had showed perfect numbers, despite how I felt.

Well, in case you haven’t guessed, the first lab result I got showed that the issue was related to my gut. I had severe gut dysbiosis, an imbalance of bad bacteria, yet I had never experienced stomach or gastrointestinal issues.

In this article, I’ll share with you three of the most powerful gut healing methods I know. These incredible tools helped me immensely and go far beyond the abilities of the average probiotic.

With that in mind, we’ll still briefly cover probiotics, as they really are a good tool for gut health.

So without delay, let’s get started.

Reef Repair

Researchers have been trying to restore damaged reefs since the 1970s. In 2000 Baruch Rinkevich of Israel’s National Institute of Oceanography started one of the first nurseries to raise young corals and transplant them onto reefs that had suffered damage from fishing, diving or storms.

Scientists started looking into specific fixes for bleaching a few years after that. In 2010 researchers at Florida’s Mote Marine Laboratory showed that by chipping fragments off of healthy corals in lab tanks they could trigger a Herculean growth response that promptly turns those fragments into full-fledged baby corals. (Corals can reproduce sexually by releasing eggs and sperm into the ocean or asexually by budding—essentially, cloning.) In 2018 and 2019 researchers in Mexico and Israel used the Mote team’s strategy to generate coral fragments and transplant them onto reefs just off Mexico’s Pacific coast. The new corals that grew from them showed an impressive survival rate of about 60 percent, despite the damaging effects of Hurricane Willa. On Florida’s reefs, corals the Mote team has grown from fragments merged into larger colonies that in 2020 began successfully spawning in the wild.

Breeding is another strategy. Since at least 2015 researchers at the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS) and elsewhere have been trying in labs to selectively breed so-called super corals, which carry genes that help the animals withstand stress. Teams at the institute and the University of Hawaii’s Gates Coral Lab are creating these ultraresilient corals using “assisted evolution,” which involves selecting wild corals with desirable genetic traits, such as the ability to survive high ocean temperatures, then cross-breeding them to yield offspring with an abundance of the traits. In a 2020 lab study at AIMS, temperature-tolerant corals created this way proved up to 26 times more likely to survive extreme heat than other corals.

Yet another approach to helping corals is to enhance reproduction. In 2017 a team at the California Academy of Sciences, the Nature Conservancy and SECORE International, a conservation organization, began catching the eggs and sperm that healthy spawning corals release in the wild on rare but predictable nights. The researchers complete the fertilization in the lab, then transplant larvae onto needy reefs.

RESEARCHER Kelly Pitts applies a paste laden with a single probiotic onto corals off the Florida coast in hopes of helping the animals fight stony coral tissue-loss disease (1). On a different dive she pumps a liquid form onto corals nearby (2). Credit: Hunter Noren, NSU, GIS and Spatial Ecology Laboratory (1, 2)

These techniques share a daunting drawback: restoration workers have to manipulate corals in a lab and refine ways to transplant them onto struggling reefs, a slow and costly process. It could be quicker and more affordable if a therapeutic could be administered directly to ailing corals in the wild. That prospect helped to lead researchers such as Peixoto to probiotics. And, theoretically at least, selectively bred lab corals, or chipped fragments, could also be treated with probiotics to make them more resistant to heat and disease before they are transplanted in the sea.

Coral formations are constellations of thousands of animals called polyps, each often smaller than a pinky fingernail. Every polyp hosts a variety of bacteria, algae, fungi and other microorganisms, collectively known as its microbiome. Like microbes in the human gut, these tiny residents carry out tasks that keep the whole system functioning. In recent years metagenomic analysis—sequencing the genes of the microbes on a polyp—has supplied a clearer picture of which tasks the microbes are performing. Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, and elsewhere have isolated bacteria that consume excess nitrogen, preventing nearby algal blooms that starve coral of nutrients. Other microorganisms degrade reactive oxygen species—molecules that damage coral cells—or help corals capture carbon for energy. Much as microbes in the human gut help to break down food, contributing to our nutrition and health, researchers theorize that beneficial coral microbes make the hosts more resilient to environmental stresses by supporting their overall health and warding off polyp disease and tissue loss.

As ocean temperatures rise, however, the microbial relationships within corals start to break down. Scientists at Oregon State University have found that bacterial communities on stressed corals often become unstable, potentially giving disease-causing microbes a chance to spread. Warming oceans, together with ocean acidification caused by higher carbon dioxide levels, also disrupt the microbe-aided calcification process that gives corals their structure, making it harder for them to repair damage. At the same time, stressed polyps expel their Symbiodinium algae, which turn sunlight into food for polyps, leaving them without a food source. This gives corals a characteristic bleached appearance that biologists recognize as a sign of doom because bleached polyps are also more vulnerable to disease. Peixoto has witnessed this alarming transformation firsthand.

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What are probiotics? Probiotics are viable (living or hibernating) bacteria and/or yeasts that confer a health benefit. Probiotics are sold as cultured foods and beverages, such as yogurts and kefirs, as well as in capsules, tablets, and powders.

What are the health benefits of probiotics? Certain probiotic strains may be helpful for constipation, bloating, diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome, while others may be helpful for throat and respiratory infections, and other uses.

What are the best probiotic supplements? We suggest that you check our Results table to find identify products "Approved" for quality in our testing. Then consider the following:

  • Choose a product that contains the type(s) and amounts of probiotic organism(s) shown to work for your condition. See the "What They Do" section and then check the Results table for products that contain that/those organism(s).
  • See ourTop Picksfor some of the most common uses of probiotics.
  • Be aware that there can be huge variation in the number of viable cells (CFUs) from product to product. Among products tested, this ranged from just 100 million to hundreds of billion! Typically, an adult probiotic should provide at least 1 billion cells daily — although, as discussed in the "What They Do" section, some probiotics have been shown to work at a lower dose.

Caution: If you have a milk allergy, be aware that trace amounts of milk proteins may occur in some probiotics (see Concerns and Cautions).

About Dr. Mercola Probiotics

So now we’re all on the same page of the importance of a healthy gut, let’s dive into the review…

I’m a big, big fan of Dr. Mercola Probiotics (Amazon).

At 70 Billion CFU, they’re one of the strongest Probiotics on the market.

(CFU stands for colony-forming units, or in simple terms, the number of live bacteria per capsule. So each capsule contains 10x the world human population in bacteria – pretty cool huh?)

What I really, really like about Dr. Mercola Probiotics is how many strains of bacteria they contain.

With 10 different strains of bacteria, these capsules almost certainly provide more health benefits than most other Probiotics brands.

This is because each strain of bacteria serves a different function in the gut, meaning a different benefit for you. Hence the more strains there are, the more benefits you should see.

These capsules also contain Fructooligosaccharides, otherwise known as Prebiotics.

Prebiotics are a food source the Probiotics need to divide and multiply, which are essential to the effectiveness of the capsules.

(It’s shocking how many Probiotics brands DON’T include Prebiotics.)

I also like how Dr. Mercola Probiotics (Amazon) are packaged with a desiccant.

The desiccant absorbs the moisture within the bottle, which is super important for the quality of Probiotics since moisture can have a big effect on the living conditions of the bacteria.

(As you can tell, I paid a lot of attention in my high-school Biology class.)

So, if you’re an otherwise healthy person, will knowing more about the bacteria present in your gut (your microbiome) really do anything for you?

Likely not. If you’re already healthy, your microbiome composition will probably be much like other healthy individuals where you live, according to Dr. Hecht.

A number of studies have demonstrated that a diverse microbiome is associated with gut health, while one lacking diversity tends to be less healthy. However, knowing the exact number and types of species you carry in your gut isn’t really necessary.

What You’ll Hear

  • 0:10 – Cool Fact of the Day!
  • 0:36 – Welcome Dr. Grace
  • 1:54 – Resistant starch 101
  • 5:46 – Regular vs resistant starch
  • 10:03 – FODMAPS
  • 12:15 – Intestinal dysbiosis
  • 14:55 – How RS works in the body
  • 21:12 – Research studies
  • 26:14 – Why we don’t eat raw potatoes
  • 32:10 – Fixing the gut
  • 36:20 – Prioritizing testing methods
  • 40:50 – Collagen and the gut
  • 43:40 – The bacteria in elderly people
  • 45:42 – Dave’s probiotic stack
  • 47:30 – The things you can do right now to start fixing your gut
  • 51:45 – The pros and cons of garlic
  • 55:00 – Top three recommendations for kicking more ass and being Bulletproof!

Catalase and Hydrogen Peroxide Experiment

How do living cells interact with the environment around them? All living things possess catalysts, or substances within them that speed up chemical reactions and processes. Enzymes are molecules that enable the chemical reactions that occur in all living things on earth. In this catalase and hydrogen peroxide experiment, we will discover how enzymes act as catalysts by causing chemical reactions to occur more quickly within living things. Using a potato and hydrogen peroxide, we can observe how enzymes like catalase work to perform decomposition, or the breaking down, of other substances. Catalase works to speed up the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water. We will also test how this process is affected by changes in the temperature of the potato. Is the process faster or slower when compared to the control experiment conducted at room temperature?


What happens when a potato is combined with hydrogen peroxide?



  1. Divide the potato into three roughly equal sections.
  2. Keep one section raw and at room temperature.
  3. Place another section in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Boil the last section for at least 5 minutes.
  5. Chop and mash a small sample (about a tablespoon) of the room temperature potato and place into beaker or cup.
  6. Pour enough hydrogen peroxide into the cup so that potato is submerged and observe.
  7. Repeat steps 5 & 6 with the boiled and frozen potato sections.

Observations & Results

Watch each of the potato/hydrogen peroxide mixtures and record what happens. The bubbling reaction you see is the metabolic process of decomposition, described earlier. This reaction is caused by catalase, an enzyme within the potato. You are observing catalase breaking hydrogen peroxide into oxygen and water. Which potato sample decomposed the most hydrogen peroxide? Which one reacted the least?

You should have noticed that the boiled potato produced little to no bubbles. This is because the heat degraded the catalase enzyme, making it incapable of processing the hydrogen peroxide. The frozen potato should have produced fewer bubbles than the room temperature sample because the cold temperature slowed the catalase enzyme&rsquos ability to decompose the hydrogen peroxide. The room temperature potato produced the most bubbles because catalase works best at a room temperature.


Catalase acts as the catalyzing enzyme in the decomposition of hydrogen peroxide. Nearly all living things possess catalase, including us! This enzyme, like many others, aids in the decomposition of one substance into another. Catalase decomposes, or breaks down, hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen.

Want to take a closer look? Go further in this experiment by looking at a very small sample of potato combined with hydrogen peroxide under a microscope!

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Warning is hereby given that not all Project Ideas are appropriate for all individuals or in all circumstances. Implementation of any Science Project Idea should be undertaken only in appropriate settings and with appropriate parental or other supervision. Reading and following the safety precautions of all materials used in a project is the sole responsibility of each individual. For further information, consult your state's handbook of Science Safety.

Did You Know That Not All Probiotics Work?

There is, however, more to formulating an effective probiotic than throwing some strains in a capsule.

For example: A probiotic which does not include an organic simple starch, which some call a ‘prebiotic’, almost ensures that the probiotics will have starved to death before reaching you. Including a prebiotic also greatly increases the odds that the probiotic strains in the product will establish a successful colony – one that will be able to sustain itself over time.

Keep track of time: Effective probiotics will noticeably begin working within days. Usually you will notice an increase in natural energy and digestive regularity first, with healthy weight changes within two weeks.

With so many brands of probiotics on the market, how can you find the right one ? Because every product claims to be the “ most effective “, it can be hard to find the probiotic that best suits your particular needs . Luckily, that’s what we’re here for.

Firstly, this list will ONLY include probiotics which are manufactured in accordance with cGMP guidelines.

If a probiotic was NOT manufactured in clean, regulated conditions, as per cGMP guidelines then in all likelihood it will not only be ineffective but it could be POTENTIALLY HAZARDOUS!

There are 3 factors which impact our grade of each probiotic. They are listed and explained below.

Potency – WAY too many companies leave their probiotics sitting around gathering dust, over 50% of the brands that we tested had ZERO live cultures left! Potency is the % of live cultures we discovered upon testing the brand, you’d be surprised at how many companies store their probiotics for way too long.

CFU (Colony-Forming Units) – this is the total count of all of the bacteria in the probiotic, VERY important because probiotics are ONLY EFFECTIVE IN ADEQUATE AMOUNTS.

Strains – total number of different types of bacteria in each probiotic, varies greatly and, along with strain diversity, affects the types and levels of benefits that you will notice.

Efficient Gene Therapy: A New Technique for Correcting Disease-Causing Mutations

Staining for RAD51 (bright cyan-colored dot) in a fertilized one-cell mouse embryo shows repair of a CRISPR-induced DNA break. Credit: Image courtesy of the researchers.

Novel method, developed by McGovern Institute researchers, may lead to safer, more efficient gene therapies.

Gene editing, or purposefully changing a gene’s DNA sequence, is a powerful tool for studying how mutations cause disease, and for making changes in an individual’s DNA for therapeutic purposes. A novel method of gene editing that can be used for both purposes has now been developed by a team led by Guoping Feng, the James W. (1963) and Patricia T. Poitras Professor in Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT.

“This technical advance can accelerate the production of disease models in animals and, critically, opens up a brand-new methodology for correcting disease-causing mutations,” says Feng, who is also a member of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT and the associate director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT. The new findings were published online on May 26, 2021, in the journal Cell.

Genetic models of disease

A major goal of the Feng lab is to precisely define what goes wrong in neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders by engineering animal models that carry the gene mutations that cause these disorders in humans. New models can be generated by injecting embryos with gene editing tools, along with a piece of DNA carrying the desired mutation.

In one such method, the gene editing tool CRISPR is programmed to cut a targeted gene, thereby activating natural DNA mechanisms that “repair” the broken gene with the injected template DNA. The engineered cells are then used to generate offspring capable of passing the genetic change on to further generations, creating a stable genetic line in which the disease, and therapies, are tested.

Although CRISPR has accelerated the process of generating such disease models, the process can still take months or years. Reasons for the inefficiency are that many treated cells do not undergo the desired DNA sequence change at all, and the change only occurs on one of the two gene copies (for most genes, each cell contains two versions, one from the father and one from the mother).

In an effort to increase the efficiency of the gene editing process, the Feng lab team initially hypothesized that adding a DNA repair protein called RAD51 to a standard mixture of CRISPR gene editing tools would increase the chances that a cell (in this case a fertilized mouse egg, or one-cell embryo) would undergo the desired genetic change.

As a test case, they measured the rate at which they were able to insert (“knock-in”) a mutation in the gene Chd2 that is associated with autism. The overall proportion of embryos that were correctly edited remained unchanged, but to their surprise, a significantly higher percentage carried the desired gene edit on both chromosomes. Tests with a different gene yielded the same unexpected outcome.

“Editing of both chromosomes simultaneously is normally very uncommon,” explains postdoc Jonathan Wilde. “The high rate of editing seen with RAD51 was really striking, and what started as a simple attempt to make mutant Chd2 mice quickly turned into a much bigger project focused on RAD51 and its applications in genome editing,” says Wilde, who co-authored the Cell paper with research scientist Tomomi Aida.

A molecular copy machine

The Feng lab team next set out to understand the mechanism by which RAD51 enhances gene editing. They hypothesized that RAD51 engages a process called interhomolog repair (IHR), whereby a DNA break on one chromosome is repaired using the second copy of the chromosome (from the other parent) as the template.

To test this, they injected mouse embryos with RAD51 and CRISPR but left out the template DNA. They programmed CRISPR to cut only the gene sequence on one of the chromosomes, and then tested whether it was repaired to match the sequence on the uncut chromosome. For this experiment, they had to use mice in which the sequences on the maternal and paternal chromosomes were different.

They found that control embryos injected with CRISPR alone rarely showed IHR repair. However, addition of RAD51 significantly increased the number of embryos in which the CRISPR-targeted gene was edited to match the uncut chromosome.

“Previous studies of IHR found that it is incredibly inefficient in most cells,” says Wilde. “Our finding that it occurs much more readily in embryonic cells and can be enhanced by RAD51 suggest that a deeper understanding of what makes the embryo permissive to this type of DNA repair could help us design safer and more efficient gene therapies.”

A new way to correct disease-causing mutations

Standard gene therapy strategies that rely on injecting a corrective piece of DNA to serve as a template for repairing the mutation engage a process called homology-directed repair (HDR).

“HDR-based strategies still suffer from low efficiency and carry the risk of unwanted integration of donor DNA throughout the genome,” explains Feng. “IHR has the potential to overcome these problems because it relies upon natural cellular pathways and the patient’s own normal chromosome for correction of the deleterious mutation.”

Feng’s team went on to identify additional DNA repair-associated proteins that can stimulate IHR, including several that not only promote high levels of IHR, but also repress errors in the DNA repair process. Additional experiments that allowed the team to examine the genomic features of IHR events gave deeper insight into the mechanism of IHR and suggested ways that the technique can be used to make gene therapies safer.

“While there is still a great deal to learn about this new application of IHR, our findings are the foundation for a new gene therapy approach that could help solve some of the big problems with current approaches,” says Aida.

Reference: “Efficient embryonic homozygous gene conversion via RAD51-enhanced interhomolog repair” by Jonathan J. Wilde, Tomomi Aida, Ricardo C.H. del Rosario, Tobias Kaiser, Peimin Qi, Martin Wienisch, Qiangge Zhang, Steven Colvin and Guoping Feng, 26 May 2021, Cell.
DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2021.04.035

This study was supported by the Hock E. Tan and K. Lisa Yang Center for Autism Research at MIT, the Poitras Center for Psychiatric Disorders Research at MIT, an NIH/NIMH Conte Center Grant, and the NIH Office of the Director.

Watch the video: Πειραματιστείτε με τη μαγειρική όχι με το κρυολόγημα και τη γρίπη. (August 2022).