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Impact of prebiotics on immune response: from the bench to the clinic

Pujari, R. & Banerjee, G., 2021. “Impact of prebiotics on immune response: from the bench to the clinic”. Immunology & Cell Biology, 99, pp. 255-273.

What it contains

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An illustration of an immune system fighting off virus cells.

The prebiotic effect

  • Prebiotics interact with several parts of the immune system.
  • There are two parts of the immune system: 1) Our innate immune system; 2) Our acquired immune system over time, due to exposures and experiences. Prebiotics offer benefits in both parts.
  • Prebiotics, either alone or through the production of short chain fatty acids can stimulate an anti-inflammatory response.
  • Studies support that prebiotics contribute to maintaining gut permeability and also in controlling inflammation within the gut.
  • The short chain fatty acids which are produced in the gut due to prebiotic fermentation, stimulate the inflammasome pathway. This pathway is essential for maintaining the gut cell wall integrity.
  • Interestingly, the short chain fatty acids also impact specific immune cells that relate to the gut. These include macrophages and regulatory T cells.
  • The impact of butyrate on macrophages is so profound as it alters the epigenetic changes and reducers pro-inflammatory markers.

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Prebiotic potential of cereal components

Scientific opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to barley beta-glucans and lowering of blood cholesterol and reduced risk of (coronary) heart disease
Short-term effect of additional daily dietary fibre intake
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