Effect of Synbiotic on the Gut Microbiota of Caesarean Delivered Infants: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Multicenter Study

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Abstract

We determined the effect of short-chain galacto-oligosaccharides (scGOS), long-chain fructo-oligosaccharides (lcFOS) and Bifidobacterium breve M-16 V on the gut microbiota of caesarean born infants. Infants were randomized to receive a standard formula (control), the same with scGOS/lcFOS and B. breve M-16 V (synbiotic), or with scGOS/lcFOS (prebiotic) from birth until week 16, 30 subjects born vaginally were included as a reference group. Synbiotic supplementation resulted in a higher bifidobacteria proportion from day 3/5 (p < 0.0001) until week 8 (p = 0.041), a reduction of Enterobacteriaceae from day 3/5 (p = 0.002) till week 12 (p = 0.016) compared to controls. This was accompanied with a lower fecal pH and higher acetate. In the synbiotic group, B. breve M-16 V was detected 6 weeks post intervention in 38.7% of the infants. This synbiotic concept supported the early modulation of Bifidobacterium in C-section born infants that was associated with the emulation of the gut physiological environment observed in vaginally delivered infants.

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