Prebiotic oligosaccharides in infant nutrition: Effects on intestinal flora

Günther Boehm, S. Fanaro, G. Moro, J. Knol, S. Arslanoglu, F. Mosca, B. Stahl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the neonatal period, the intestine is colonised in a stepwise process resulting in a colonisation with a complex bacterial flora. There is general consensus that the intestinal flora in healthy breast fed infants has several beneficial effects. In the present review, experiences with a specific prebiotic mixture are summarised. The composition of the studied prebiotic mixture (90% galacto-oligosaccharides and 10 high molecular weight fructo-oligosaccharides) is designed to mimic the function of neutral oligosaccharides from human milk. The experimental data as well as several clinical trials in infants demonstrate the the given prebiotic compound stimulates Bifidobacteria and Lactobadlli, improves the "colonisation resistance" and results in stool consistency similar like breast feeding. In summary, the data indicate that supplementation of infant formula with prebiotic oligosaccharides changes the intestinal flora towards the flora found in breast fed infants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-16
Number of pages3
JournalAgro Food Industry Hi-Tech
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2004


  • Infants
  • Nutrition
  • Oligosaccharides
  • Prebiotic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science


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