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Using mouse gnotobiotic models, the Laboratory of Gnotobiology of the Institute of Microbiology of the CAS has demonstrated that intestinal microbiota influences postnatal growth and size gain. It does so by restoring the production and activity of a key growth factor, the Insulin-like Growth Factor-1. This effect is particularly visible upon chronic undernutrition. Furthermore, researchers have identified the strain of a bacterial taxa (Lactobacillus) that has the ability to correct growth defects observed in animals raised in absence of intestinal microbiota. These results suggest that this strain may be used to buffer the deleterious effect of undernutrition on infant growth as well as to sustain healthy growth in the general population.