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Probiotics and gastrointestinal disorders:
Controlled trials of European Union patients

Contract number : QLK1-2000-00563
Contract type : Shared Cost Project
Total cost : € 1.648.353
EC contribution : € 1.531.913
Starting date : 1/02/2001
Duration : 36 Months
Scientific Officer : Jürgen Lucas
Project website : proeuhealth/
Prof. Dr Fergus Shanahan
National University of Ireland
Department of Microbiology and Medicine
Western Road
Tel.: +353-21-4901226
Fax: +353-21-4345300
E-mail: f.shanahan @

Two distinct long-term (one year), large-scale, multi-centered, randomised, double blind, placebo-controlled probiotic-based clinical trials of remission maintenance within a subset of the European Union population suffering from Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) will be performed. In former EC-funded studies, two probiotic bacterial strains have been isolated, characterised and demonstrated to be safe and efficient.

  • The efficacy of probiotic micro-organisms, administered as fermented milk products, in maintaining remission of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) - Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis - will be assessed.
  • The PROGID partners will establish a repository of biological samples (blood, saliva, and faeces) isolated from a subset of the EU population suffering from Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis. This material may provide information from which the effects mediating probiotic effects may be elucidated.
(expected) Results and achievements
  • Assessment of the efficacy of 2 previously-isolated and well-characterised probiotic micro-organisms in the treatment of European patients with inflammatory bowel disease (i.e., Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis);
  • Critical determination of the role of enteric flora in initiating, or promoting, inflammatory events in the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel disease;
  • Characterisation of the population dynamics of microbial flora associated with inflammatory bowel disease through both conventional microbiological techniques and existing innovative molecular biology-based technologies, which will also identify the major unculturable groups of gastrointestinal microbial flora.
  • Determination of the effects of consumption of the two selected probiotic bacteria on the host response.


Institut Català de la Salut
Hospitals Vall d'Hebron
Digestive System Research Unit
Passeig Vall d'Hebron
119-129 Hospital General
08035 Barcelona
University of Kuopio
Institute of Applied Biotechnology
Savilahdentie 9
PO Box 1627
70211 Kuopio
Alimentary Health Ltd.
Simla Villa
Passage West, Co.Cork
Wageningen University
Lab of Microbiology
Dept. of Agrotechnology and Food Sciences
Hesselink van Suchtelenweg 4
PO Box 8033
6703 CT Wageningen
The Netherlands

Fifth Framework Programme

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