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Annu Rev Food Sci Technol. 2011;2:373-93. doi: 10.1146/annurev-food-022510-133739.

Synbiotics in health and disease.

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Department of Food and Nutritional Sciences, The University of Reading, Reading RG6 6AP, United Kingdom.


The synbiotic concept was first introduced, along with prebiotics, as "mixtures of probiotics and prebiotics that beneficially affect the host by improving the survival and implantation of live microbial dietary supplements in the gastrointestinal tract, by selectively stimulating the growth and/or by activating the metabolism of one or a limited number of health-promoting bacteria, thus improving host welfare" (Gibson & Roberfroid 1995). Since, there have been many in vitro and in vivo studies focusing on the application of prebiotics, firstly in health and gradually in disease states. Only recently have studies on synbiotics started to emerge with the main focus being on applications against disease. Here, we review the current literature, with the main focus on in vivo human studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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