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Fecal microbiota composition of breast-fed infants is correlated with Human Milk Oligosaccharides consumed

Author: Wang M, Li M, Wu S et al. | Journal: J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr.

Volume: 60 Issue: 6 DOI:10.1097/MPG.0000000000000752. Objectives This study tested the hypothesis that the fecal bacterial genera of breast-fed (BF) and formula-fed (FF) infants differ and that human milk oligosaccharides (HMO) modulate the microbiota of BF infants. Methods Fecal samples were obtained from BF (n = 16) or FF (n = 6) infants at 3-month postpartum. Human milk were collected on the same day when feces were collected. The microbiota was assessed by pyrosequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes. HMO were measured by HPLC-Chip time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Results The overall microbiota of BF differed from that of FF (P = 0.005). Compared to FF, BF had higher relative abundances of Bacteroides, lower proportions of Clostridium XVIII, Lachnospiracea incertae sedisStreptococcusEnterococcus and Veillonella (P < 0.05). Bifidobacterium predominated in both BF and FF infants, with no difference in abundance between the two groups. The most abundant HMO were lacto-N-tetraose + lacto-N-neotetraose (LNT + LNnT, 22.6%), followed by 2′-fucosyllactose (2′FL, 14.5%) and lacto-N-fucopentaose I (LNFP I, 9.5%). Partial least squares regression of HMO and microbiota showed several infant fecal bacterial genera could be predicted by their mothers’ HMO profiles and the important HMO for the prediction of bacterial genera were identified by variable importance in the projection scores. Conclusions These results strengthen the established relationship between HMO and the infant microbiota, identify statistical means whereby infant bacterial genera can be predicted by milk HMO. Future studies are needed to validate these findings and determine if supplementation of formula with defined HMO could selectively modify the gut microbiota. Read More

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