Prebiotics – Feed for the gastrointestinal flora
Most probiotic strains can live on what we call fermentable fibres, such as pectins, hemicelluloses, and some celluloses, among the most common sources of fibers. Certain ingredients are rich in some fermentable fibers that can help probiotics. For example, sugar beet pulp is rich in pectin. Prebiotics consist of naturally occurring fructans (e. g. fructooligosaccharides (FOS), short-chain FOS, oligofructose (OF) and inulin), mannan-oligosaccharides (MOS), soy oligosaccharides, galactooligosaccharides (GOS) and several synthetic substances.
Positive influence on the host
These non-digestible feed additives have positive influence on the host organism by stimulating growth or metabolic activity of desired bacteria. For this purpose, they must not be degraded by the host itself but fermented selectively by only a few desired species of bacteria like bifidobacteria or lactobacillus. As a result, prebiotics improve the composition of the microbiome. An increased mucus production and therefore improved conditions for the preservation of the intestinal tissue facilitates the absorption of nutrients and promotes performance. Another positive effect of prebiotics is the modulation of the innate and acquired immune system and an enhanced resistance to potential pathogens. This makes the animal less susceptible to disease.
Beta-glucans and mannan-oligosaccharides
The prebiotics beta-glucans and mannan oligosaccharides (MOS) are naturally occurring polysaccharides and are part of the cell walls of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. They can also be found in brewers’ yeast, torula yeast (Candida utilis), fungi, and algae.
BgMOS: a prebiotic feed ingredient based on cell walls of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. BgMOS is rich in mannan-oligosaccharides and ß-glucans. It is therefore effective in agglutination of pathogenic bacteria and balancing the intestinal flora.