Andean yacon root (Smallanthus sonchifolius Poepp. Endl) fructooligosaccharides as a potential novel source of prebiotics.
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The ability of three known probiotic strains (two lactobacilli and one bifidobacterium) to ferment fructooligosaccharides (FOS) from yacon roots (Smallanthus sonchifolius Poepp. Endl) was compared to commercial FOS in this study. Results indicate that Lactobacillus acidophilus NRRL-1910, Lactobacillus plantarum NRRL B-4496, and Bifidobacterium bifidum ATCC 15696 were able to ferment yacon root FOS. FOS consumption apparently depended on the degree of polymerization and the initial FOS composition. L. plantarum NRRL B-4496 and L. acidophilus NRRL B-1910 completely utilized 1-kestose molecules, while B. bifidum was able to utilize 1-kestose molecules as well as molecules with a higher degree of polymerization.