METHODS AND RESULTS: Lactic acid bacteria strains were isolated and examined for acid tolerance, bile salt resistance and hypocholesterolemic properties. Among the isolates, Lactobacillus plantarum TAR4 showed the highest cholesterol reduction ability (48·01%). The focus in the in vivo trial was to elucidate the cholesterol balance from findings pertaining to serum cholesterol reduction in rat model fed with high fat diet via oral administration. Rats fed with high-cholesterol diet supplemented with Lact. plantarum TAR4 showed significant reduction in serum total cholesterol (29·55%), serum triglyceride (45·31%) and liver triglyceride (23·44%) as compared to high-cholesterol diet (HCD) group. There was a significant increment in faecal triglyceride (45·83%) and faecal total bile acid (384·95%) as compared to HCD group.
CONCLUSIONS: The findings showed that probiotic Lact. plantarum TAR4 supplementation reduced the absorption of bile acids for enterohepatic recycling and increased the catabolism of cholesterol to bile acids and not by suppressing the rate of cholesterol synthesis.
SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF STUDY: Probiotic supplements could provide a new nonpharmacological alternative to reduce cardiovascular risk factors.