Send to

Choose Destination
Front Immunol. 2018 Jun 11;9:1265. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2018.01265. eCollection 2018.

Non-Digestible Oligosaccharides Can Suppress Basophil Degranulation in Whole Blood of Peanut-Allergic Patients.

Author information

Department of Dermatology/Allergology, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht University, Utrecht, Netherlands.
Laboratory of Translational Immunology, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, Netherlands.
Division of Pharmacology, Faculty of Science, Utrecht Institute for Pharmaceutical Sciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, Netherlands.
Nutricia Research, Immunology, Utrecht, Netherlands.



Dietary non-digestible oligosaccharides (NDOs) have a protective effect against allergic manifestations in children at risk. Dietary intervention with NDOs promotes the colonization of beneficial bacteria in the gut and enhances serum galectin-9 levels in mice and atopic children. Next to this, NDOs also directly affect immune cells and low amounts may reach the blood. We investigated whether pre-incubation of whole blood from peanut-allergic patients with NDOs or galectin-9 can affect basophil degranulation.


Heparinized blood samples from 15 peanut-allergic adult patients were pre-incubated with a mixture of short-chain galacto-oligosaccharides and long-chain fructo-oligosaccharides (scGOS/lcFOS), scFOS/lcFOS, or galectin-9 (1 or 5 µg/mL) at 37°C in the presence of IL-3 (0.75 ng/mL). After 2, 6, or 24 h, a basophil activation test was performed. Expression of FcεRI on basophils, plasma cytokine, and chemokine concentrations before degranulation were determined after 24 h.


Pre-incubation with scGOS/lcFOS, scFOS/lcFOS, or galectin-9 reduced anti-IgE-mediated basophil degranulation. scFOS/lcFOS or 5 µg/mL galectin-9 also decreased peanut-specific basophil degranulation by approximately 20%, mainly in whole blood from female patients. Inhibitory effects were not related to diminished FcεRI expression on basophils. Galectin-9 was increased in plasma after pre-incubation with scGOS/lcFOS, and both NDOs and 5 µg/mL galectin-9 increased MCP-1 production.

Conclusion and clinical relevance:

The prebiotic mixture scFOS/lcFOS and galectin-9 can contribute to decreased degranulation of basophils in vitro in peanut-allergic patients. The exact mechanism needs to be elucidated, but these NDOs might be useful in reducing allergic symptoms.


basophil degranulation; food allergy; galectin-9; immunomodulation; non-digestible oligosaccharides

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Frontiers Media SA Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center