Poster Topical Area: Maternal, Perinatal and Pediatric Nutrition
Location: Hall D
Poster Board Number: 304
Objectives: Emerging research suggests dietary intake of oligosaccharides may improve cognition and affect brain development. The objective of this study was to determine the influence of dietary oligofructose (OF) and human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs, as 2'-fucosyllactose) on brain development and cognition using a translational piglet model.
Methods: Beginning at 2 d of age, 36 (n = 12 per treatment) male pigs received one of 3 milk replacers formulated to contain: control (CON) [0 g/L OF + 0 g/L HMOs], OF [CON + 5 g/L OF], or OF + HMOs [CON + 5 g/L OF + 1.0 g/L HMOs]. All diets contained a formulation space of 8 g/L that was reserved for addition of dietary test articles, and lactose was used to balance the formulations. Pigs were tested on the novel object recognition task using delays of 1 h or 2 d at 22 d of age. At 32 d of age, pigs were subjected to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) procedures to assess macrostructural and microstructural brain development.
Results: Piglets consuming OF exhibited recognition memory after a 1 h delay and piglets consuming OF + HMOs exhibited recognition memory after a 2 d delay (all P < 0.001). There were no significant differences in behavior during the habituation or sample trials (all P > 0.125), however across the duration of the first habituation trial piglets consuming OF trended towards moving less (P = 0.084). Piglets provided OF + HMOs visited the novel object a greater number of times during the test trial after a 2 d delay (P = 0.013) compared with CON piglets. Additionally, piglets provided OF + HMOs habituated to the sample object more quickly than CON piglets group after a 2 d delay, but this effect was reversed after a 1 h delay (P = 0.039). As a proportion of total brain volume, OF and OF + HMOs piglets exhibited a larger relative volume of the olfactory bulbs as compared to CON piglets (P = 0.02). Piglets consuming the CON diet tended to have larger (P = 0.07) relative caudate volumes, whereas OF piglets tended to have larger left (P = 0.06) and right (P = 0.06) hippocampal volumes. Voxel-based morphometry indicated diet-induced differences in cerebellar grey matter concentrations as well as white matter concentrations of the internal capsule.
Conclusion: Collectively, these data indicate that OF or OF + HMOs differentially improve cognitive performance but do not greatly alter the trajectory of brain development in young pigs. This project was funded by Nestlé Nutrition R&D.
Graduate Research Assistant
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign