Effect of Functional Oligosaccharides and Ordinary Dietary Fiber on Intestinal Microbiota Diversity

Front Microbiol. 2017 Sep 20:8:1750. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2017.01750. eCollection 2017.


Functional oligosaccharides, known as prebiotics, and ordinary dietary fiber have important roles in modulating the structure of intestinal microbiota. To investigate their effects on the intestinal microecosystem, three kinds of diets containing different prebiotics were used to feed mice for 3 weeks, as follows: GI (galacto-oligosaccharides and inulin), PF (polydextrose and insoluble dietary fiber from bran), and a GI/PF mixture (GI and PF, 1:1), 16S rRNA gene sequencing and metabolic analysis of mice feces were then conducted. Compared to the control group, the different prebiotics diets had varying effects on the structure and diversity of intestinal microbiota. GI and PF supplementation led to significant changes in intestinal microbiota, including an increase of Bacteroides and a decrease of Alloprevotella in the GI-fed, but those changes were opposite in PF fed group. Intriguing, in the GI/PF mixture-fed group, intestinal microbiota had the similar structure as the control groups, and flora diversity was upregulated. Fecal metabolic profiling showed that the diversity of intestinal microbiota was helpful in maintaining the stability of fecal metabolites. Our results showed that a single type of oligosaccharides or dietary fiber caused the reduction of bacteria species, and selectively promoted the growth of Bacteroides or Alloprevotella bacteria, resulting in an increase in diamine oxidase (DAO) and/or trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO) values which was detrimental to health. However, the flora diversity was improved and the DAO values was significantly decreased when the addition of nutritionally balanced GI/PF mixture. Thus, we suggested that maintaining microbiota diversity and the abundance of dominant bacteria in the intestine is extremely important for the health, and that the addition of a combination of oligosaccharides and dietary fiber helps maintain the health of the intestinal microecosystem.

Keywords: diversity; fecal metabolic profiling; functional oligosaccharides; intestinal microbiota; microecosystem.