Background: Alterations in the composition of gut microbiota -known as dysbiosis- have been proposed to contribute to the development of obesity, thereby supporting the potential interest of nutrients acting on the gut microbes to produce beneficial effect on host energetic metabolism. Non-digestible fermentable carbohydrates present in cereals may be interesting nutrients able to influence the gut microbiota composition.
Objective and design: The aim of the present study was to test the prebiotic potency of arabinoxylan oligosaccharides (AXOS) prepared from wheat bran in a nutritional model of obesity, associated with a low-grade chronic systemic inflammation. Mice were fed either a control diet or a high fat (HF) diet, or a HF diet supplemented with AXOS during 8 weeks.
Results: AXOS supplementation induced caecal and colon enlargement associated with an important bifidogenic effect. It increased the level of circulating satietogenic peptides produced by the colon (peptide YY and glucagon-like peptide-1), and coherently counteracted HF-induced body weight gain and fat mass development. HF-induced hyperinsulinemia and the Homeostasis Model Assessment of insulin resistance were decreased upon AXOS feeding. In addition, AXOS reduced HF-induced metabolic endotoxemia, macrophage infiltration (mRNA of F4/80) in the adipose tissue and interleukin 6 (IL6) in the plasma. The tight junction proteins (zonula occludens 1 and claudin 3) altered upon HF feeding were upregulated by AXOS treatment suggesting that the lower inflammatory tone was associated with the improvement of gut barrier function.
Conclusion: Together, these findings suggest that specific non-digestible carbohydrates produced from cereals such as AXOS constitute a promising prebiotic nutrient in the control of obesity and related metabolic disorders.