Wed, Feb 22, 2017 | updated 07:19 PM IST

Breast milk protein safely decreases infections in preemies

Updated: Oct 08, 2016 13:15 IST

Washington D.C. [USA], Oct. 8 (ANI): To reduce hospital-acquired infections in neonatal intensive care units, researchers have found a protein in breast milk to be a safe and efficient solution.

Lead author of the study Michael Sherman explained, "The majority of diseases affecting newborn preemies are hospital-acquired infections such as meningitis, pneumonia and urinary tract infections. Not only did we find that lactoferrin, a protein found in breast milk, could reduce hospital infections among preemies, but we also measured the safety of feeding the protein to newborns."

Sherman and his team conducted a randomized control trial with premature infants weighing between 1 pound, 10 ounces, and 3 pounds, 4 ounces, at birth.

Sixty of the infants were fed lactoferrin through a feeding tube twice a day for 28 days, while 60 additional infants were given a placebo.

Researchers found the rate of hospital-acquired infections was 50 percent lower among the infants fed lactoferrin.

In addition, the researchers used MedDRA, a system that reports safety outcomes to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, to evaluate the safety of lactoferrin during and after the infants received the

protein.

Infants were examined for adverse effects from the protein six and 12 months after the trial ended.

Sherman said that all adverse effects identified were associated with complications from preterm birth and not lactoferrin.

"While a large-scale clinical trial is needed before lactoferrin becomes a standard treatment protocol in NICUs, our results show the safety of lactoferrin and provide an initial report of efficiency related to reducing hospital-acquired infections," Sherman said.

Lactoferrin can cost an estimated 25 dollar to 500 dollar per dose; a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that hospital-acquired infections costs 9.8 billion dollar to

treat each year.

The study was published by The Journal of Pediatrics. Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institutes of Health (HD05774). (ANI)

Beware! Zika can be a reason for miscarriage

Updated: Feb 22, 2017 14:18 IST

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Drinking too much may age arteries over time!

Updated: Feb 22, 2017 06:03 IST

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Chronic knee pain may be treated online

Updated: Feb 21, 2017 06:41 IST

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Children inherit obesity from parents: Study

Updated: Feb 20, 2017 14:54 IST

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No difference between good or bad diet: Study

Updated: Feb 20, 2017 05:54 IST

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People with ADHD may have smaller brain volume

Updated: Feb 19, 2017 07:09 IST

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Dads-to be face greater risk of depression

Updated: Feb 19, 2017 06:53 IST

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Washington D.C. [USA], Feb. 18 (ANI): Now you can save your kid from surgery, as a study shows that antibiotics may be an effective treatment for acute non-complicated appendicitis in children, instead of surgery.

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