Modulating the Gut Microbiome
The Role of Probiotics & Prebiotics

Stephen Olmstead, MD

Description

The human intestinal microbiota functions as an organ and is critical for immune and gastrointestinal system maturation, colonization resistance, modulation of immune responses, and nutritional needs.

A balanced, diverse microbiota is essential for health. There are disorders in which the beneficial use of probiotics is documented including antibiotic-associated diarrhea, C. difficile-associated diarrhea, inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel disease, dysbiosis, urinary tract infections, allergies, atopic dermatitis, eczema, and lactose intolerance. As a complementary therapy, prebiotics increase the numbers and/or activities of healthful gut microbiota and support populations of healthful genera that are not available as probiotics. This presentation will provide the knowledge and tools needed to effectively use prebiotics and probiotics to enhance health.

Learning objectives:

  1. Understand the beneficial effects of the gastrointestinal microbiota on the development and function of the immune, gastrointestinal, and other organ systems, as well as the adverse effects that can occur secondary to microbiome disruption
  2. Appreciate the mechanisms by which probiotics may confer benefit and the health conditions for which evidence exists to support their use
  3. Learn the safety profile and potential risks of probiotic preparations and how to effectively select and dose probiotic formulas

Keywords: weight management – hormonal imbalance – nutritional insufficiences

Stephen Olmstead, MDAviva Romm, MD

Stephen Olmstead, MD, graduated from the University of New Mexico with distinction in biology and chemistry. He attended the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. He trained in internal medicine at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. Olmstead completed a cardiology fellowship at the University of Washington. He is board certified in both internal medicine and cardiovascular diseases. His academic honors include Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Omega Alpha. Dr. Olmstead served in the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps in the Indian Health Service. For many years Dr. Olmstead was Clinical Assistant Professor in Medicine at the University of Washington Medical School in Seattle. He served as advisor to the King County Natural Medicine Clinic during its inception and consultant to the Office of Alternative Medicine after it was first established at the National Institutes of Health. He has long been an advocate of rigorous scientific research on complementary medical therapies. He has more than 30 years of experience in clinical trials, registries and basic research. In 2005, Dr. Olmstead joined ProThera Inc. as its Chief Science Officer. Dr. Olmstead provides scientific support to both technical services and marketing at ProThera. He is responsible for the company newsletters, educational programs, and technical materials. designs and directs clinical trials of ProThera products including probiotics. Dr. Olmstead's current interests are in the development of innovative probiotic and prebiotic formulations and the use of nutriceuticals to disrupt dysbiotic biofilms.

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