New names, same bacteria: science is renaming two of your favourite Bio-K+ bacteria!

New names, same bacteria: science is renaming two of your favourite Bio-K+ bacteria!

Bio-K-Plus Company

The science of bacteria is constantly evolving as our ability to investigate and understand the bacterial world grows. In 2020, some long-awaited research meant big changes in our scientific knowledge of bacteria. So, moving forward, you may notice some small changes to the label of your favourite Bio-K+ products. The formula you love hasn’t changed at all—but what we call two of the three bacteria that make up our award-winning formula has.

Bio-K+ is a synergistic blend of three Lactobacillus bacteria. Lactobacillus is what we call a genus, or a level of classification of the natural world that is one level higher than species. For example, human beings are known as homo sapiens—we belong to the genus homo and sapiens is a species within the genus.

Evolution of the Lactobacillus genus

In 2020, an international group of scientific experts agreed that the Lactobacillus genus is actually made up of 25 different genera (the plural of genus). How is that possible? New technology now allows us to very accurately determine the genetic makeup of bacteria (the genotype) while also better investigating the physical appearance and traits of bacteria (their phenotype). Based on this new knowledge, all of the bacteria that we used to call Lactobacillus were far too diverse to stay in one genus. So now, there are 25!

Two of the three Bio-K+ bacteria will see their names change. For example, Lactobacillus casei LBC80R will now be known as Lacticaseibacillus casei LBC80R. It might not seem like a big thing, but it’s a big leap forward for science. All of the research done before 2020 is still valid, but now we will know these bacteria by new names as the research moves forward. In Canada, you’ll see the names start to change on probiotic packaging over the next three years as Health Canada has given the industry three years to update their naming practices in line with the new science.

Bio-K+ evolves with the science

At Bio-K+, scientific exploration is at the heart of what we do, which is why Bio-K+ is a leader in clinically proven probiotics. As our scientific understanding of our award-winning formula evolves, we want to ensure that we uphold the highest standards in our work and use the most accurate scientific knowledge available to us. So, we are working to update all of our packaging to reflect this new awareness as quickly as possible. You will likely see the packaging change by early summer 2021.

Remember, the only real change is the name on the package! Here is what you’ll see:

Current name

New name

Lactobacillus acidophilus CL1285®

Lactobacillus acidophilus CL1285® (no change)

Lactobacillus casei LBC80R®

Lacticaseibacillus casei LBC80R®

Lactobacillus rhamnosus CLR2®

Lacticaseibacillus rhamnosusCLR2®

Is my Bio-K+ Changing?

As the saying goes, would a rose by any other name smell as sweet? Of course it would! Nothing has changed but the name. And just like that rose, the Bio-K+ formula you know and love is still the same, clinically proven and effective probiotic. Science has just helped us give a more accurate name to bacteria that work so hard for us.

Have questions? Our amazing customer service team is here to help.

Reference: Zheng, J., Wittouck, S., Salvetti, E., Franz, C., Harris, H., Mattarelli, P., O'Toole, P. W., Pot, B., Vandamme, P., Walter, J., Watanabe, K., Wuyts, S., Felis, G. E., Gänzle, M. G., & Lebeer, S. (2020). A taxonomic note on the genus Lactobacillus: Description of 23 novel genera, emended description of the genus Lactobacillus Beijerinck 1901, and union of Lactobacillaceae and Leuconostocaceae. International journal of systematic and evolutionary microbiology, 70(4), 2782–2858.

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