Fructans in the first 1000 days of life and beyond, and for pregnancy

Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2016 Dec;25(4):652-675. doi: 10.6133/apjcn.092016.02.


Inulin-based prebiotics are non-digestible polysaccharides that influence the composition of the gut microbiota in infants and children, notably eliciting a bifidogenic effect with high short chain fatty acid levels. Inulin, a generic term that comprises β-(2,1)-linked linear fructans, is typically isolated from the chicory plant root, and derivatives such as oligofructose and long chain inulin appear to have different physiological properties. The first 1000 days of a child's life are increasingly recognized as a critical timeframe for health also into adulthood, whereby nutrition plays a key role. There is an ever increasing association between nutrition and gut microbiota composition and development, with life health status of an individual. This review summarizes the latest knowledge in the infant gut microbiota from preterms to healthy newborns, as well as in malnourished children in developing countries. The impact of inulin or mixtures thereof on infants, toddlers and young children with respect to intestinal function and immunity in general, is reviewed. Possible benefits of prebiotics to support the gut microbiome of malnourished infants and children, especially those with infections in the developing world, are considered, as well as for the pregnant mothers health. Importantly, novel insights in metabolic programming are covered, which are being increasing recognized for remarkable impact on long term offspring health, and eventual potential beneficial role of prebiotic inulins. Overall increasing findings prompt the potential for gut microbiota-based therapy to support health or prevent the development of certain diseases from conception to adulthood where inulin prebiotics may play a role.

菊粉益生元是一类非消化性多糖,能够影响婴幼儿肠道中微生态的构成,尤其 是增强双岐杆菌转化产生短链脂肪酸的作用。菊粉是一个通用的术语,包括β- (2,1)线性果聚糖(主要从菊苣植物根中分离所得)及其衍生品如低聚果糖和长 链菊粉,尽管各自具有不同的生理功能。婴儿出生后第一个1000 天被认为是影 响健康的一个关键期,甚至关系到成年期的健康,其中营养是关键因素之一。 在此关键期间营养和肠道微生物群组成之间的联系不断增强和发展,从而影响 个体的生命健康。本文总结了对健康新生儿和早产婴儿肠道微生态进行研究的 结果,以及在发展中国家对营养不良患儿进行观察的最新进展。这些研究内容 包括菊粉或其混合物对婴幼儿和较大年龄儿童的肠道功能和免疫力产生的影 响。这些研究结果显示,益生元可以支持营养不良患儿肠道中的有益微生物生 长从而抑制感染,因此特别有益于发展中国家的儿童和孕妇的健康。本文提出 了有关菊粉益生元在肠道微生态代谢编程方面的重要作用,明确了益生元对儿 童长期健康的潜在有益作用。上述研究进展为利用益生元对某些疾病进行肠道 微生态疗法治疗和预防的可能性提供了证据。.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bifidobacterium
  • Child, Preschool
  • Defecation
  • Female
  • Fructans* / administration & dosage
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome*
  • Humans
  • Immunity
  • Infant
  • Infant Nutrition Disorders
  • Infant Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infections
  • Inulin
  • Maternal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena*
  • Milk, Human
  • Prebiotics*
  • Pregnancy


  • Fructans
  • Prebiotics
  • Inulin