Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd.

October 15, 2019

Presentation of Effects of lactic acid bacterium B240 at Palynological Society of Japan

The Otsu Nutraceuticals Research Institute of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. presented results of a trial conducted to evaluate the anti-allergy effects of lactic acid bacterium B240*1, isolated from miang, a form of fermented tea leaves, at the 60th Annual Meeting of the Palynological Society of Japan on October 12, 2019.


The results indicated that consumption of lactic acid bacterium B240 may offer a new option for alleviating mild allergic reactions from cedar pollen exposure.

  1. *1Lactic acid bacterium B240・・・Lactobacillus pentosus ONRICb0240
■Summary of Presentation

Effects of Oral Consumption of Heat-killed lactic acid bacterium B240 on Overall Face Scale Scores during Cedar Pollen Exposure

- A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial -

Approximately one-third of the Japanese population suffers from sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion and other symptoms of allergic reaction during the Japanese cedar pollen season, and these numbers continue to increase. Reports indicate that this manifestation causes declines in both quality of life (QOL) and labor productivity. The effects of allergy medications such as antihistamine drugs and steroid nasal drops are temporary, and certain of these medications cause side effects such as drowsiness. As the severity of allergy symptoms varies greatly according to the individual, appropriate measures to address allergic reactions of various types and levels of severity are required, including the possibility of managing mild reactions by consumption of anti-allergic foods.

Lactobacillus pentosus ONRICb0240 (lactic acid bacterium B240) is isolated from miang, a form of fermented tea leaves. Lactic acid bacterium B240 showed the highest IgA inducing potency among screened lactic acid bacteria in an evaluation with mouse Peyer's patch cells. Elevation of salivary IgA secretion has also been confirmed in clinical studies. The current study sought to evaluate the effects of lactic acid bacterium B240 on allergic reactions.

In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, 34 healthy adult men and women (20 - 65 years of age) consumed either tablets containing lactic acid bacterium B240 (2 billion counts) or placebo tablets for 8 weeks. At the beginning of the trial, after four weeks, and after eight weeks, participants were exposed to cedar pollen for three hours in an environmental exposal facility. Every 30 minutes during the exposure, participants recorded subjective symptoms (runny nose, sneezing, nasal congestion, itchy nose, itchy eyes, watery eyes, number of tissues required and overall face scale) in logbooks based on a standard Japan allergic rhinitis quality of life questionnaire (JRQLQ No.1). Eight weeks of consumption of lactic acid bacterium B240 resulted in significant improvement of the overall facial scale, which evaluates the severity of allergic reaction and level of disruption of everyday caused by exposed to cedar pollen for three hours. Significant positive correlations between overall face scale and scores for each symptom were also observed. These results indicate that lactic acid bacterium B240 provides anti-allergy effects, and may be expected to offer a new option for people with mild allergic reactions to manage their symptoms.

■Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd./Otsuka Pharmaceutical Otsu Nutraceuticals*2 Research Institute

At Otsuka Pharmaceutical, we are committed to a holistic approach to health and well-being of people and are striving to create innovative, thoroughly-original pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products based on our corporate philosophy, "Otsuka-people creating new products for better health worldwide".
With these two core businesses, analogous to riding on a bicycle, we drive on two wheels.

Established in 2000, the Otsu Nutraceuticals Research Institute is dedicated to research concerning the intestines and nutrition. Focusing on the intestines where nutrition is absorbed, mucosal immunity is the theme of research to identify functions of lactic acid bacteria and develop related products.

  1. *2"Nutraceuticals" was created by combining the words "nutrition" and "pharmaceuticals".
  1. Note:Reclassification of the genus Lactobacillus in 2020 has resulted in the following revision to the official name of lactic acid bacterium B240:
    (Old) Lactobacillus pentosus
    (New) Lactiplantibacillus pentosus