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Probiotics Market Research Reports & Industry Analysis

As defined by Gregor Reid of the Canadian Research and Development Centre for Probiotics, probiotics are “live microorganisms, which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host.” Dr. Reid’s definition was embraced by both the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization (FAO/WHO) in 2001.

The most well known strain of probiotic bacteria is Lactobacillus Bulgaricus, which has long been used in the manufacture of American yogurt. The name of the bacteria is derived from a combination of words that references lactose and Bulgaria, the latter because it was Stamen Grigorov (1878–1945), a Bulgarian medical student studying medicine in Geneva, who put first yogurt (which was from Bulgaria) under the microscope. Next to Lactose Bulgaricus, Streptococcus Thermophilus is the most common strain of bacteria used to culture milk. Unlike Lactose Bulgaricus, however, it doesn’t belong to an ancient yogurt tradition. It was isolated in 1974 for industrial production of dairy products and is also used in cheese production.

Grigorov’s discovery had a great impact on another Slavic researcher, Russian scientist and Nobel laureate Eli Metchnikoff, who had noted the long life span of Bulgarian peasants who subsisted mainly on yogurt as a protein source and believed there was a direct connection between Bulgarian “sour milk” and longevity. Although there are numerous accounts of medicinal miracles in yogurt’s history and lore, it was not until Metchnikoff that western medicine sought to quantify the specific beneficial chemical properties contained in yogurt bacteria. In 1904, Metchnikoff became the deputy director at the Pasteur Institute laboratory in Paris. There he discovered the process of phagocytosis, which demonstrated how harmful bacteria was broken down by certain specific white blood cells.

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Probiotics Industry Research & Market Reports

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