General Health Effects and Toxicity of a Specific Mixture of Isomalto-oligosaccharides

Prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrate compounds, often referred to as "soluble fiber". Although these carbohydrates are non-nutritive, they can influence the gut microbiome. An isomalto-oligosaccharide (IMO) prebiotic, specifically, a fermented mixture of maltosyl-isomalto-oligosaccharides (MIMO, DP 3-9), was tested for acceptability, toxicity, morphological/histopathological and biochemical changes in laboratory rats that were given three concentrations of MIMO (5, 10, and 20 % w/w and an energy control) added to their feed. Male Sprague Dawley rats were used to evaluate potential adverse effects of this specific IMO. No evidence of adverse effects was noted in any of the rodent test groups given the prebiotic, even when it was presented as a significant percentage of their diet (e.g. 20 %). It appears that this prebiotic mixture was well-tolerated, non-toxic, and may be suitable for use as dietary supplement in other mammals.