ABSTRACT: There has been an increased influx of probiotic products in the Indian market during the last decade. However, there has been no systematic approach for evaluation of probiotics in food to ensure their safety and efficacy. An initiative was, therefore, taken by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) along with the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) to formulate guidelines for regulation of probiotic products in the country. These guidelines define a set of parameters required for a product/strain to be termed as 'probiotic'. These include identification of the strain, in vitro screening for probiotic characteristics, animal studies to establish safety and in vivo animal and human studies to establish efficacy. The guidelines also include requirements for labeling of the probiotic products with strain specification, viable numbers at the end of shelf life, storage conditions, etc., which would be helpful to the consumers to safeguard their own interest.
The Indian journal of medical research 07/2011; 134(1):22-5. · 1.84 Impact Factor