Research backed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation could offer a new solution to the problem of vitamin A deficiency by creating modified gut bacteria, researchers told NutraIngredients. The novel approach, spearheaded by researchers at Rutgers University in the US, aims to create gut friendly bacteria that are able to produce the Vitamin A precursor beta-carotene directly in the gut of deficient people. Led by Professor Loredana Quadro, the team have now modified a strain of E. coli bacteria to produce beta-carotene-something that is the first step on the path towards creating a human probiotic able to battle vitamin A deficiency. "What we did in the paper was establish a proof of principal," explained Professor Paul Breslin, co-author of the study.
/ / / Gut bacteria to battle vitamin A deficiency: Could probiotics be modified to produce beta-carotene?