Diet supplemented with phytochemical epigallocatechin gallate and probiotic Lactobacillus fermentum confers second generation synbiotic effects by modulating cellular immune responses and antioxidant capacity in aging mice

  • Rohit SharmaEmail author
  • Madhu Kumari
  • Amita Kumari
  • Anamika Sharma
  • Ashu Gulati
  • Mahesh Gupta
  • Yogendra PadwadEmail author
Original Contribution



In the present study, we systematically identified and evaluated a synbiotic combination of phytochemical epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and probiotic bacteria in amelioration of immunosenescence and oxidative stress in aged mice.


Inhibitory effects of EGCG against different bacterial species were evaluated in vitro, followed by analysis to identify potential combination of EGCG and probiotic bacteria against alleviation of oxidative and inflammatory stress ex vivo. The best synbiotic combination, vis-à-vis prebiotic and probiotic supplementation alone, was then evaluated in aged Swiss albino mice for modulation of various immunological and antioxidative parameters.


EGCG strongly inhibited the growth of pathogenic microbes as compared to probiotic bacteria. A combination of EGCG with probiotic Lactobacillus fermentum (LF) provided evidence of additive effects in the amelioration of oxidative and inflammatory stress-induced cell death. In vivo study revealed that combined supplementation of LF and EGCG significantly enhanced neutrophil oxidative index, CD3+ cell numbers and activation status, Th1/Th2 cytokines in splenic supernatants as well as liver Nrf-2 expression in comparison with treatments with LF or EGCG alone. The combined application of EGCG and LF did not simply result in additive or synergistic effects in relation with individual treatments.


These observations suggest that EGCG could be considered as a potential prebiotic that can offer second generation synbiotic health beneficial effects for the alleviation of some of the deleterious aspects of immunosenescence and aging.


EGCG Probiotics Prebiotics Synbiotics Immunity Aging 



Epigallocatechin gallate


Lactobacillus fermentum


Lactobacillus rhamnosus


Lactobacillus planatarum


Tert-Butyl hydroperoxide








Peripheral blood mononuclear cells


Probiotic-conditioned media


Nuclear factor kappa-light-chain enhancer of activated B cells



Authors acknowledge the Director, CSIR-IHBT, Palampur for supporting and providing all the necessary facilities. This work was supported by grants from the Science and Engineering Research Board, Government of India, through the Young Scientist Scheme (YSS/2015/000758) and MLP0204 of CSIR Government of India.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

394_2018_1890_MOESM1_ESM.docx (857 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 857 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pharmacology and Toxicology Laboratory, Food and Nutraceutical DivisionCSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource TechnologyPalampurIndia
  2. 2.Food and Nutraceutical DivisionCSIR-Institute of Himalayan Bioresource TechnologyPalampurIndia

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