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An in vitro approach to study effects of prebiotics and probiotics on the faecal microbiota and selected immune parameters relevant to the elderly

Liu, Y., Gibson, G. R. and Walton, G. E. (2016) An in vitro approach to study effects of prebiotics and probiotics on the faecal microbiota and selected immune parameters relevant to the elderly. PLoS ONE, 11 (9). e0162604. ISSN 1932-6203

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0162604

Abstract/Summary

The aging process leads to alterations of gut microbiota and modifications to the immune response, such changes may be associated with increased disease risk. Prebiotics and probiotics can modulate microbiome changes induced by aging; however, their effects have not been directly compared. The aim of this study was to use anaerobic batch culture fermenters to assess the impact of various fermentable carbohydrates and microorganisms on the gut microbiota and selected immune markers. Elderly volunteers were used as donors for these experiments to enable relevance to an aging population. The impact of fermentation supernatants on immune markers relevant to the elderly were assessed in vitro. Levels of IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10 and TNF-α in peripheral blood mononuclear cell culture supernatants were measured using flow cytometry. Trans-galactooligosaccharides (B-GOS) and inulin both stimulated bifidobacteria compared to other treatments (p<0.05). Fermentation supernatants taken from faecal batch cultures supplemented with B-GOS, inulin, B. bifidum, L. acidophilus and Ba. coagulans inhibited LPS induced TNF-α (p<0.05). IL-10 production, induced by LPS, was enhanced by fermentation supernatants from faecal batch cultures supplemented with B-GOS, inulin, B. bifidum, L. acidophilus, Ba. coagulans and Bac. thetaiotaomicron (p<0.05). To conclude, prebiotics and probiotics could lead to potentially beneficial effects to host health by targeting specific bacterial groups, increasing saccharolytic fermentation and decreasing inflammation associated with aging. Compared to probiotics, prebiotics led to greater microbiota modulation at the genus level within the fermenters.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences > Food Microbial Sciences Research Group
ID Code:66722
Publisher:Public Library of Science

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