Human milk oligosaccharides: Innate defenders of infant gut health and immunity

4 min read /
Gut Microbiota Growth & Development Nutrition & Disease Management

Human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) are the third most abundant solid component of human milk after lactose and lipids, often exceeding the total amount of human milk proteins. HMOs are known to be prebiotics  which can modulate changes in the infant’s microbiota composition and in the intestinal epithelial cell response, with the potential to both directly and indirectly modulate immune responses.  Several preclinical studies support the association between HMOs and a reduced incidence of infections and other GI disorders.  A better understanding of the function of HMOs and their role in maintaining gut health will help us understand better the benefits for children in preventing disease.

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