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Bifidobacterium, BB-12®

The world’s most documented Bifidobacterium

Bifidobacteria were discovered and isolated from the stool sample of a breastfed baby in 1899.1 The Chr. Hansen Bifidobacterium, BB-12® (hereafter referred to by use of the trademark, BB-12®) originates from our collection of dairy cultures and has been used in baby formula, dietary supplements and fermented milk products (such as yogurt) worldwide since 1986. 

Lab-based research has shown that the BB-12® strain is an excellent survivor of both gastric acid solution at pH 2.5 and 1% porcine bile solution. These characteristics enable the probiotic strain to survive the journey through the gastrointestinal tract. (Ref: Data from Chr. Hansen Human Health Development).  


The Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis, BB-12® strain is the most documented Bifidobacterium in the world 

The BB-12® strain has been described in around 400 scientific publications and supported by more than 200 publications describing studies in humans. Through scientific investigation, BB-12® has been associated with benefits in the areas of gastrointestinal health and immune health. The BB-12® strain has been tested in a range of people, from preterm babies through to the elderly, and across several health areas


The Bifidobacterium, BB-12® strain has been associated with several health benefits  

In babies and children:

  • Digestive health†  
    Associated with softer and more frequent bowel movements,2 and shorter and fewer episodes of loose stools3, 4 and overall regularity19

  • Excessive crying and fussing*  
    Associated with significantly less excessive crying and fussing in babies.5, 19

  • Daily sleep*
    Associated with additional daily sleep in babies with excessive crying and fussing and an improvement in the health-related quality of life of their parents/caregivers19

  • Respiratory health†  
    Associated with fewer episodes of respiratory discomfort.6, 7, 8
  • Skin health*  
    Associated with fewer instances of red, dry, and scaly skin in babies.10  

In adults:  

  • Oral health*  
    Associated with lower salivary levels of specific bacteria that contribute to poor oral health.11

  • Frequency of bowel movements†  
    Associated with more regular bowel movements in adults12, 13 and the elderly.14

  • Immune health*  
    Associated with benefits for immune system function.15

  • Cholesterol levels# 
    Associated with supporting healthy levels of choloesterol.16


* studied alone
# studied in combination with other strains
† studied alone and in combination with other strains

The BB-12® probiotic strain from Chr. Hansen has superior quality  

Chr. Hansen has a unique manufacturing process with full control of all steps during the production of our probiotic strains. This results in high quality probiotic strains with superior quality and safety.  

  • The BB-12® strain from Chr. Hansen has had 100% genome stability for decades 
  • The BB-12® strain from Chr. Hansen is stable for up to three years at temperatures up to 30 degrees (zone 4b)
  • The Chr. Hansen BB-12® strain in formula products shows superior in-use stability, heat stability for administration and storage stability
  • The BB-12® strain from Chr. Hansen received a Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) status by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the US for both infants and the general population.17 

In Europe, Bifidobacterium animalis has been granted Qualified Presumption of Safety (QPS) status since 2007 by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) – a status granted at species level.18  


BB-12® is a registered trademark of Chr. Hansen A/S.



1 Jungersen, et al. BB-12®. Microorganisms. 2014;2:92-110.
2 Vlieger AM, et al. Br J Nutr. 2009;102(6):869-75.
3 Weizman Z, et al. Pediatrics. 2005;115(1):5-9.
4 Saavedra JM, et al. Lancet. 1994;344(8929):1046-9.
5 Nocerino R, et al. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2020;51(1):110-20.
6 Taipale TJ, et al. Br J Nutr. 2011;105(3):409-16.
7 Taipale TJ, et al. Pediatr Res. 2016;79(1-1):65-9.
8 Rautava S, et al. Br J Nutr. 2009;101(11):1722-6.
10 Isolauri E, et al. Clin Exp Allergy. 2000;30(11):1604-10.
11 Caglar E, et al. Acta Odontol Scand. 2008;66(3):154-8.
12 Eskesen D, et al. Br J Nutr. 2015;114(10):1638-46.
13 Uchida K, et al. Journal of Nutritional Food. 2005;8:39-51.
14 Pitkala KH, et al. J Nutr Health Aging. 2007;11(4):305-11.
15 Rizzardini G, et al. Br J Nutr. 2012;107(6):876-84.
16 Ejtahed HS, et al. J Dairy Sci. 2011;94(7):3288-94.
17 Food and Drug Administration. GRAS Notice Inventory > Agency Response Letter GRAS Notice No GRN 000049. 2002.
18 EFSA Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ). Statement on the update of the list of QPS-recommended biological agents intentionally added to food or feed as notified to EFSA 3: Suitability of taxonomic units notified to EFSA until September 2015. EFSA Journal. 2015;13:4331.
19 Chen et al. Beneficial microbes, 2021.


This communication is only intended for business-to-business and health care professionals. This communication is not intended for consumers of final consumer goods. Nothing on this page is meant to be perceived as an approved claim.

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