MCAS, histamine intolerance and probiotics
Many people, including myself, have developed histamine intolerance following a viral infection. This may be because of, or lead to, a condition called Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS), which is a dysfunction of the immune system that causes damaging levels of endogenous histamine to be released. Controlling the level of ingested histamine and related factors has a palpable effect on my health and is thought to be one of the most important modes of treatment for these conditions.
The following is a summary of the excellent article produced by Optibac on the subject of histamine intolerance, plus some additional references indexed at the bottom.
Histamine production and degradation
Histamine metabolism is strain dependent. Some species are thought to be generally beneficial, but strain level data is required for confirmation. Below, unless the strain level name is given, the histamine metabolism of the bacteria cannot be guaranteed.
Histamine is formed from histadine via the enzyme histadine decarboxylase. Bacteria without the genes to encode this enzyme are thought to be unable to produce histamine.
Diamine oxidase (DAO) is thought to be the most important enzyme for breaking down ingested histamine. It is produced by the gut, and so if the gut is damaged production of the enzyme may be affected. Alcohol, NSAIDs, some antibiotics, and antidepressants can cause histamine release or inhibit DAO.
Rebalancing microflora and improving gut integrity are key for improving symptoms of histamine intolerance.
- Lactobacillus plantarum
- Lactobacillus plantarum D-1033
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus
- Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG (DSM 33156)
- Bifidobacterium infantis
- Bifidobacterium longum
- Bifidobacterium lactis BI-04
- Bifidobacterium lactis HN019
- Lactobacillus acidophilus NCFM
- Lactobacillus paracasei casei 431
- Saccharomyces boulardii (Fernández-Pacheco et al., 2021)
- Bifidobacterium bifidum W23 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Bifidobacterium lactis W51 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Bifidobacterium lactis W52 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus acidophilus W37 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus brevis W63 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus casei W56 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus salivarius W24 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus lactis W19 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus lactis W58 (private correspondence with Winclove Probiotics)
- Lactobacillus casei
- Lactobacillus bulgaricus
Histamine producing, with caveats
- Lactobacillus reuteri
- Streptococcus thermophilus: only 2/69 studied strains (Calles-Enríquez et al., 2010).
Dysbiosis involving the following bacteria is associated with histamine intolerance.
- Escherichia coli
- Salmonella typhimurium
- Fernández-Pacheco, P., Ramos Monge, I. M., Fernández-González, M., Poveda Colado, J. M., & Arévalo-Villena, M. (2021). Safety Evaluation of Yeasts With Probiotic Potential. Frontiers in Nutrition, 8, 659328. https://doi.org/10.3389/fnut.2021.659328
- Calles-Enríquez, M., Eriksen, B. H., Andersen, P. S., Rattray, F. P., Johansen, A. H., Fernández, M., Ladero, V., & Alvarez, M. A. (2010). Sequencing and Transcriptional Analysis of the Streptococcus thermophilus Histamine Biosynthesis Gene Cluster: Factors That Affect Differential hdcA Expression. Applied and Environmental Microbiology, 76(18), 6231–6238. https://doi.org/10.1128/AEM.00827-10