Structure and characteristics
Since B. bifidum is a Gram-positive bacterium that is not motile, anaerobic, and not spore-forming. The bacterium is rod-shaped and can be found living in clusters, pairs, or even independently. The majority of the population of B. bifidum is found in the colon, lower small intestine, breast milk, and often in the vagina.
The manipulation of the gut flora is complex and may cause bacteria-host interactions. Although probiotics, in general, are considered safe, there are concerns about their use in certain cases. Some people, such as those with compromised immune systems, short bowel syndrome, central venous catheters, heart valve disease and premature infants, may be at higher risk for adverse events. Rarely, consumption of probiotics may cause bacteremia, and sepsis, potentially fatal infections in children with lowered immune systems or who are already critically ill.
B. bifidum is not commomly found in breast milk. Breast feeding is not one way to transmit the bacteria from mother to child. B. bifidum is found in the vagina; some studies show that vaginal births transmit more B.bifidum from mother to child than caesarean births. Transmission of B. bifidum allows a child to begin production of microflora which helps to colonize the child’s intestines after birth.
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