Mentor: Dr. Langkamp-Henken
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
"I applied to the University Scholars program in order to stay over the summer and continue to help Dr. Henken's lab with their research study. Working in Dr. Henken's lab has allowed me the opportunity to express my creativity, critical thinking skills and leadership in ways that a classroom would be unable to do so. With Dr. Henken's guidance, I hope to complete my undergraduate thesis through CALS."
Immunoglobulin Factors and relationships to Probiotics
mechanisms of epithelial membrane transport allow one to examine the presence of antibodies in human fecal samples and saliva
Nutrition's role in Immunity
Diabetes Prevention Literature
Impact of Probiotics (Lactobacillus Gasseri, Bifidobacertium Bifidum, Bifidobacterium Longum) on Fecal Secretory IgA Levels in Healthy Older Adults
SIgA is an immunoglobulin that protects epithelial linings and mucosal tissue by inhibiting invasion of antigens. Over time, the production of IgA decreases due to age, lifestyle factors or nutrient deficiencies, which lead to a decrease in overall immune function. Fecal sIgA levels will serve as a biological marker of sIgA levels and immunity by comparing baseline and final levels after introduction of a probiotic supplement into the diets of aged adults. Probiotics can stimulate a change in the intestinal microflora, which provide a role in immune function by increasing the number of both bifidobacteria and lactobacilli within the gastrointestinal tract. Through priobiotics, promotion of microbiota can potentially lead to the increased development and secretion of sIgA . Given the aforementioned roles sIgA carries out, this study would be beneficial to further understanding the relationships fecal sIgA share with certain bacteria. This study can also be highly beneficial to society as aging is associated with impaired immune function. The decreased production of sIgA associated with age may put older adults at risk for infections. Interventions that improve immune function would be of benefit; therefore the purpose of this study is to investigate whether daily intake of a probiotic containing Lactobacillus gasseri, Bifidobacterium bifidum, Bifidobacterium longum alters fecal concentrations of sIgA. It is expected that the subjects who are randomized to the probiotic treatment will have higher levels of fecal sIgA.