A new study published in the Journal of Applied Microbiology showed that antibiotics may not be the only way to eliminate dangerous gut pathogens like E. coli; IgY antibodies seem to work as well. 

IgY Nutrition uses IgY antibodies to get rid of gut microbes that cause dysbiosis, SIBO, and IBS-like symptoms. Today, let’s recap some IgY Antibody science and examine the new study!

Recap: What are IgY Antibodies?

First of all, let’s remind ourselves what IgY antibodies are. 

Antibodies are components of animals’ immune systems that bind to and help to neutralize invaders. 

For example, after getting a COVID-19 vaccine, humans develop antibodies specialized to neutralize COVID-19. That way, the next time they are exposed to the virus, their immune system can defend the body from it more easily. 

IgY antibodies are a specific type of antibody that can be used to help neutralize specific pathogens living in the human gut

But what exactly are they? Hang in there with us through a short bit of science to find out how IgY antibodies are made:

IgY technology harnesses natural passive immunity processes to develop antibodies for human use. Passive immunity is the transfer of antibodies from one organism to another. This transfer occurs naturally in mammals through breastfeeding. Avian organisms such as chickens transmit antibodies to their young through the yolks of their eggs. 

This transfer fortifies the offspring’s immune systems with already responsive antibodies, which the mother has developed in response to her prior exposure to pathogens.

For example, if a mother chicken gets sick with the avian flu, she will develop antibodies to it and pass them on to her offspring through the yolks of her eggs. 

Scientists can incorporate naturally-made antibodies of their choosing into medications or supplements by vaccinating mother hens with pathogens of choice. These antibodies can be used to neutralize (disarm) pathogens in humans. Chicken antibodies, called IgY, work just as well in humans as in chickens.

After allowing the hens time to produce and transmit antibodies in their yolks, scientists extract them from the eggs. After this extraction procedure, the antibodies are ready for use as a medication or supplement. The only ingredient is, well, egg yolk (without the shell)!

Doctors have been enhancing immune responses through artificial passive immunity for decades. IgY antibodies are used in antivenom medications, diagnostic procedures, pediatric norovirus medication, and more. These antibodies have been studied for their use in other applications, such as HIV-induced cachexia, cystic fibrosis, and fibromyalgia. 

So what happens if they’re used to attack gut bugs like E. Coli?

New Study Finds IgY Antibodies Can Neutralize Enteric E. coli

Scientists set off to find out. They tested this by allowing chickens to produce antibodies against E. coli, a dangerous gut pathogen. They then isolated the IgY antibodies from their yolk and put the antibodies to the test against live E. coli. 

They found that the antibodies worked both in vivo and in vitro, fancy science-speak for “in a living creature” and “in lab dishes.” They came to this conclusion:

“According to our findings, passive immunotherapy with anti-CEL IgY can prevent bacterial colonization and toxicity, thus facilitating in controlling the enteric [gut] diseases caused by enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli [dangerous E. coli].”

This is exciting for the future of gut health science. 

So what does this news mean for those of us at home dealing with dysbiotic pathogens living in the gut? It’s further confirmation that IgY antibodies can be a helpful tool when looking to optimize your gut microbiome. 

IgY Antibodies for Dysbiosis

Scientists at IgY Nutrition realized that IgY antibodies could be used to address dysbiosis by neutralizing (making inactive) well-known bad actors in gut microbiomes. So, they created IgY Max. 

IgY Max is a specifically immunized egg-based supplement containing antigen-specific antibodies that target and neutralize 29 dysbiotic pathogens commonly found in the human gut microbiome, including Klebsiella pneumoniae, Salmonella, various strains of Staphylococcus and Streptococcus, and more. 

In non-science speak: IgY Max is a supplement (made of only egg yolk) containing antibodies that neutralize pathogens living in the gut. These pathogens could contribute to your digestive symptoms if you have them. 

Upon consumption, IgY Max antibodies exert their anti-pathogenic activity throughout the entire length of the gastrointestinal tract. They have a high

pathogen-antibody affinity and inhibit bacterial adhesion, suppress colonization, and neutralize each targeted pathogen thoroughly. Neutralized pathogens are expelled from the gut through the stool (your poop!).

The product’s elimination of pathogens allows beneficial microbes to flourish, which may help to restore microbial diversity to the microbiome and rebalance it. This positive shift in microbiome composition reduces dysbiotic pathogens’ initiation of gastrointestinal damage and amplifies healthy flora’s conferral of gastrointestinal benefits.

University-led studies of IgY Max confirm this, showing that IgY Max consumers’ beneficial flora, gut barrier integrity, and inflammation levels improved significantly over eight weeks of use

Participants’ levels of inflammatory cytokines, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, helpful bacteria counts in the stool, zonulin, histamine, and diamine oxidase improved substantially. Perhaps most importantly, participants’ symptoms improved upon use. 

Consumers report a decrease in symptoms of dysbiosis following consistent consumption, including improved stool regularity and composition, decreased bloating and gas, and higher energy levels. Though unofficial, the abundance of positive Amazon reviews describing users’ alleviation of symptoms is a telling indicator of IgY Max®’s power to benefit consumers.

Have you tried IgY Max for your digestive symptoms? Let us know in the comments on Instagram @igynutrition. See you next time!