Impact of circular brewer's spent grain flour after in vitro gastrointestinal digestion on human gut microbiota

Teresa Bonifácio-Lopes, Marcelo D. Catarino, Ana A. Vilas-Boas, Tânia B. Ribeiro, Débora A. Campos, José A. Teixeira, Manuela Pintado*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Brewer's spent grain (BSG) solid residues are constituted by dietary fibre, protein, sugars, and polyphenols, which can have potential effects on human health. In this study, for the first time, the flours obtained from solid residues of solid-liquid extraction (SLE) and ohmic heating extraction (OHE) were applied throughout the gastrointestinal digestion simulation (GID), in order to evaluate their prebiotic potential and in vitro human gut microbiota fermentation. The results showed that the digestion of BSG flours obtained by the different methods lead to an increase throughout the GID of total phenolic compounds (SLE: from 2.27 to 7.20 mg gallic acid/g BSG-60% ethanol:water (v/v); OHE: 2.23 to 8.36 mg gallic acid/g BSG-80% ethanol:water (v/v)) and consequently an increase in antioxidant activity (ABTS-SLE: from 6.26 to 13.07 mg ascorbic acid/g BSG-80% ethanol:water (v/v); OHE: 4.60 to 10.60 mg ascorbic acid/g BSG-80% ethanol:water (v/v)-ORAC-SLE: 3.31 to 14.94 mg Trolox/g BSG-80% ethanol:water (v/v); OHE: from 2.13 to 17.37 mg Trolox/g BSG-60% ethanol:water (v/v)). The main phenolic compounds identified included representative molecules such as vanillic and ferulic acids, vanillin and catechin, among others being identified and quantified in all GID phases. These samples also induced the growth of probiotic bacteria and promoted the positive modulation of beneficial strains (such as Bifidobacterium spp. and Lactobacillus spp.) present in human faeces. Moreover, the fermentation by human faeces microbiota also allowed the production of short chain fatty acids (acetic, propionic, and butyric). Furthermore, previous identified polyphenols were also identified during fecal fermentation. This study demonstrates that BSG flours obtained from the solid residues of SLE and OHE extractions promoted a positive modulation of gut microbiota and related metabolism and antioxidant environment associated to the released phenolic compounds.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2279
Number of pages27
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jul 2022


  • Antioxidant activity
  • Human gut microbiota
  • In vitro digestion
  • Phenolic compounds
  • Prebiotic activity


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