Probiotic PCC® and gastrointestinal and respiratory-tract illness symptoms in athletes

West, et al. Lactobacillus fermentum (PCC®) supplementation and gastrointestinal and respiratory-tract illness symptoms: a randomised control trial in athletes. Nutrition Journal 2011;10:30

This was a second study undertaken by researchers at the Australian National University among other specialists, and in addition to respiratory infections, also examined the effect of PCC® on gastrointestinal illness in elite athletes. Competitive cyclists (64 males and 35 females, aged 35 and older) were randomised to either the probiotic PCC® or placebo treatment for 11 weeks in a double-blind, controlled trial.

General findings

Lactobacillus numbers increased in males taking PCC®, and they experienced a substantial reduction in the severity of both gastrointestinal illness and lower respiratory tract illness at the mean training load, which became more pronounced as training load increased.


The authors concluded that PCC® may be a useful nutritional supplement for healthy exercising males.

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