Falling tablets

The importance of potency

Get the potency essentials – match the clinical studies and be aware of the ceiling effect

What should the dose of a product be? To know that, it is necessary to go back to the definition of probiotics: “[probiotics are] live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host” (FAO/WHO 2001). 

Match clinical studies

Based on that, it is clear that you need the probiotic bacteria in “adequate amounts.” The adequate amount should be linked to the clinical studies, i.e., the probiotic strain and the dose you choose for a product should match those used in clinical trials. It is also important to target the same probiotic area as addressed in the clinical study and for which a positive physiological effect has been demonstrated. 

Dose response

Clinical studies on probiotics indicate that there may be a ceiling effect. This means that you need a certain amount of probiotics in order to obtain full efficacy. However, the effect does not increase linearly with a higher dose; the effect reaches a ceiling. 

Colony Forming Units (CFU)

The potency of a probiotic product is measured in Colony Forming Units, often abbreviated as CFU. The bacteria form colonies that can be counted when spread on an agar plate and incubated for a few days. 

Want to learn more?

Please contact us for more information. We can help guide you to the right potency for your product.

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