Potential prebiotic properties of whey protein and glycomacropeptide in gut microbiome

Bryna Rackerby1, Hoang Ngoc M. Le1, Avery Haymowicz1, David C. Dallas1,2, Si Hong Park1,3,*
Author Information & Copyright
1Department of Food Science and Technology, Oregon State University, Corvallis 97331, USA.
2School of Biological and Population Health Sciences, Nutrition, Oregon State University, Corvallis 97331, USA.
3Department of Food Science and Technology, Chung-Ang University, Anseong 17546, Korea.
*Corresponding Author: Si Hong Park. E-mail:

© Copyright 2024 Korean Society for Food Science of Animal Resources. This is an Open-Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Received: Oct 18, 2023 ; Revised: Jan 22, 2024 ; Accepted: Jan 29, 2024

Published Online: Jan 31, 2024


Proteins in whey have prebiotic and antimicrobial properties. The whey protein comprises numerous bioactive proteins and peptides, including glycomacropeptide (GMP), a hydrophilic casein peptide that separates with the whey fraction during cheese making. Glycomacropeptide has traditionally been used as a protein source for individuals with phenylketonuria and also has prebiotic (supporting the growth of Bifidobacterium and lactic acid bacteria) and antimicrobial activities. Glycomacropeptide supplementation may help positively modulate the gut microbiome, help treat dysbiosis-related gastrointestinal disorders, and improve overall health in consumers.

Keywords: whey protein; glycomacropeptide (GMP); prebiotic effect; gut microbiome