Dr. Daniela Petrova from Dobrich is the leader of a successful Bulgarian probiotic company

Nutritional therapy with probiotics helps in the treatment of coronavirus, said in an interview with Pro News Dobrich the co-owner and manager of Daflorn Ltd., the company that produces over 50 probiotic products protected by over 15 patents and trademarks in Bulgaria and the world.

Dr. Daniela Petrova is a native of Dobrich, she is a toxicologist and co-owner of Daflorn company that produces Bulgarian probiotics.

She is a colleague in the scientific field and a companion in work and life of Prof. Nikola Alexandrov, one of the pioneers and an inventor of probiotics not only in Bulgaria but also in the world, Major General of the Reserve and former Head of the Military Medical Academy.


  • Probiotics of Daflorn company are the latest most modern generation. What makes them different from other probiotics and what are their advantages over their competitors on the market?

Yes, Daflorn produces the latest generation of probiotics Laktera, protected by US and European patents. Probiotic industry produces different generations of probiotics so that they can stay alive and exert their effects in the human colon. To reach the end of the small intestines and the beginning of the colon, probiotic microorganisms have to overcome several obstacles – to stay alive on the shelf in the store or pharmacy, to pass through the human stomach, where the рН is very low, ie. acidity is high, to pass through the duodenum, where рН is high, ie. alkalinity is high and then to pass through 6-7 metres of intestines to reach the colon where all probiotics work. There are four known probiotic generations so far. The first generation are the so-called starter cultures without a coat and must be stored at sub-zero temperatures and also, they are very vulnerable to high acidity and alkalinity. The second generation of probiotics are those with a single protein coat, most often synthetic, which is also not enough to keep them alive until they reach the colon. The third generation are probiotics with microcapsule, most often protein one.

The fourth, most modern, generation are the probiotics wrapped in a coat consisting of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. During the biotechnological process our probiotics Laktera are naturally wrapped in the amino acids, simple sugars and fatty acids of milk and thus they reach the large intestine alive where they have effect. It is subject to know-how, part of the US Patent.

The US Patent for Laktera is the only one in the field of biotechnology out of a total of 8 Bulgarian patents in USA. Daflorn is the only company in East Europe that has valid US and European patents in the field of probiotics. Daflorn Ltd. produces its own probiotic raw material, while over 90% of the companies only pack the probiotics as they buy the raw material from other companies.


  • You rely on your own method to isolate new probiotic microorganisms from nature. Could you tell us more about that?

In 2011, N. Alexandrov and D. Petrova, for the first time in the world, managed to isolate 8 probiotic strains from spring water in the wild – a spring in Bulgaria, in the Balkan Mountains, as the most important among them is Lactobacillus bulgaricus DWT1. Capture of probiotic microorganisms from spring water is done for the first time in the world, so we can talk about a scientific discovery. The first probiotic microorganisms of water origin in the world are owned by Daflorn and they are protected by the US Patent.


  • What is the product range of the company and which are your undisputed hits on the market?

We produce two types of Laktera probiotics – probiotic formula in powder and probiotics in capsules. Our hit product is Laktera Nature. For people, allergic to cow’s milk, we have created probiotic formula in powder Laktera Allergy Free. Our Lactobacillus bulgaricus in this probiotic is multiplied in goat’s milk medium. Goat’s milk composition is closest to human milk and is suitable for small children and the elderly. The probiotics Laktera on goat’s milk are protected by a European Patent.


  • What is the health effect of probiotics and is the continuous use of probiotics recommended from a medical point of view or is it only necessary during antibiotic treatment?

I have been taking our probiotics Laktera for 20 years. I had to take antibiotic only once during this period. The two most important effects of Lactobacillus bulgaricus DWT1 of water origin are its influence on immunity and the control of dysbacteriosis in the colon. Master Dunov also wrote that most diseases start in the gut. The large intestine is largely responsible for the human immune response.

Our strain of water origin in Laktera restores the microbiome of the large intestine and in this aspect, it can be taken every day, not only during and after antibiotic treatment. Two or three teaspoons of Laktera Nature in the morning are enough to keep our immune system healthy.


  • Do you have enough observations on the effects of the nutritional therapy with probiotics on the coronavirus?

For about 6 months we carried out two large-scale clinical studies in patients with COVID-19. We studied the effect of Lactobacillus bulgaricus DWT1 on the cellular immunity of 86 patients with COVID-19 in Pleven University Hospital.

We found that the inclusion of Laktera Nature as a nutritional support in the complex treatment regimen leads to modulation of cellular immunity in these patients. T-helpers that produce cytokines decrease and thus we avoid the so-called cytokine storm which leads to death in patients with COVID-19. At the same time, cytotoxic T-lymphocytes and NK cells (other major cells of cellular immunity that directly kill the COVID-19 virus) increase.

None of our patients were intubated and no one died, despite the fact that most of them had concomitant diseases. All patients, receiving Laktera Nature at a dose 4 measure spoons 3 times a day, recovered and were discharged from hospital without complications.


Our study in pregnant women at the University hospital St. Anna, Sofia, is very interesting. During the study period, nine pregnant women with COVID-19 in 33-35 weeks of gestation (all with single fetus pregnancy) were treated. Pregnant women cannot take many medicines and doctors have limitations in the treatment of COVID-19, up to 1-2 antibiotics, anticoagulants, vitamins and food supplements for pregnancy. Including Laktera Nature in this therapy resulted in the rapid recovery of all women who gave birth to 9 healthy babies. All newborns had negative PCR tests on the 1st and on the 7th day and had no pneumonia.


  • Are probiotics relevant in the treatment of other serious diseases such as cancer and autoimmune diseases?

When we discovered this unique strain of Lactobacillus bulgaricus of water origin, Prof. Palok Aich, Dean of the School of Biological Sciences/Faculty of Biology at The National Institute of Science, Education and Research NISER (the Indian analogue of NASA) contacted us. He proved, in six different ways, including genetic, that our strain Lactobacillus bulgaricus in Laktera Nature has an anti-cancer effect, as it affects the human innate immunity by increasing the number of M1 macrophages, which kill newly formed tumor cells.

We have been observing more than 15 cancer patients who have undergone surgery, radiation and chemotherapy and take Laktera Nature every day. The study is very time consuming as the process of observation is very long, but to our satisfaction these patients have survived the 5-year period of observation of cancer and now they have an active lifestyle.


  • What is your advice to people who consider their health a priority care and responsibility – how can we help ourselves to keep diseases away from us?


Bulgaria is a blessed land and if we want to be healthy let’s use this unique strain of Lactobacillus bulgaricus of water origin which is a gift from God.


Article first published by Tanya Topalova, Pro News Dobrich on 23.10.2021