Antibiotics ampicillin 1 g/L and neomycin 0.5 g/L were added to drinking water before or during feeding of resistant starch (RS) to rats to inhibit fermentation.Methods and results:
In a preliminary study, antibiotics and no RS were given prior to rats receiving a transplant of cecal contents via gavage from donor rats fed RS (without antibiotics) or a water gavage before feeding resistant starch to both groups. Antibiotics given prior to feeding RS did not prevent later fermentation of RS regardless of either type of gavage. In the second study, antibiotics were given simultaneously with feeding of RS. This resulted in inhibition of fermentation of RS with cecal contents pH >8 and low amounts of acetate and butyrate. Rats treated with antibiotics had reduced Bifidobacteria spp., but similar Bacteroides spp. to control groups to reduce acetate and butyrate and preserve the production of propionate. Despite reduced fermentation, rats given antibiotics had increased glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) and cecum size, measures that are usually associated with fermentation.Conclusions:
A simultaneous delivery of antibiotics inhibited fermentation of RS. However, increased GLP-1 and cecum size would be confounding effects in assessing the mechanism for beneficial effects of dietary RS by knocking out fermentation.