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Prebiotic potential of a maize-based soluble fibre and impact of dose on the human gut microbiota

Costabile, A., Deaville, E. R., Morales, A. M. and Gibson, G. R. (2016) Prebiotic potential of a maize-based soluble fibre and impact of dose on the human gut microbiota. PLoS ONE, 11 (1). e0144457. ISSN 1932-6203

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0144457


Dietary management of the human gut microbiota towards a more beneficial composition is one approach that may improve host health. To date, a large number of human intervention studies have demonstrated that dietary consumption of certain food products can result in significant changes in the composition of the gut microbiota i.e. the prebiotic concept. Thus the prebiotic effect is now established as a dietary approach to increase beneficial gut bacteria and it has been associated with modulation of health biomarkers and modulation of the immune system. Promitor™ Soluble Corn Fibre (SCF) is a well-known maize-derived source of dietary fibre with potential selective fermentation properties. Our aim was to determine the optimum prebiotic dose of tolerance, desired changes to microbiota and fermentation of SCF in healthy adult subjects. A double-blind, randomised, parallel study was completed where volunteers (n = 8/treatment group) consumed 8, 14 or 21 g from SCF (6, 12 and 18 g/fibre delivered respectively) over 14-d. Over the range of doses studied, SCF was well tolerated Numbers of bifidobacteria were significantly higher for the 6 g/fibre/day compared to 12g and 18g/fibre delivered/day (mean 9.25 and 9.73 Log10 cells/g fresh faeces in the pre-treatment and treatment periods respectively). Such a numerical change of 0.5 Log10 bifidobacteria/g fresh faeces is consistent with those changes observed for inulin-type fructans, which are recognised prebiotics. A possible prebiotic effect of SCF was therefore demonstrated by its stimulation of bifidobacteria numbers in the overall gut microbiota during a short-term intervention.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences > Food Microbial Sciences Research Group
ID Code:54610
Publisher:Public Library of Science


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