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ARS Home » Plains Area » Houston, Texas » Children's Nutrition Research Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #343058

Research Project: Molecular, Cellular, and Regulatory Aspects of Nutrition During Development

Location: Children's Nutrition Research Center

Title: Preserving Mother Nature's best food for preterm infants

item Burrin, Douglas - Doug

Submitted to: Journal of Nutrition
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/20/2017
Publication Date: 4/12/2017
Citation: Burrin, D.G. 2017. Preserving Mother Nature's best food for preterm infants. Journal of Nutrition, Commentary. 147(6):1023-1024.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The American Academy of Pediatrics, the European Society for Paediatric Gastroenterology Hepatology and Nutrition, and the World Health Organization recommend that infants should be breastfed the first 6 mo of life. In the case of high-risk, very-low-birth-weight (<1500 g) premature infants, this is especially important because numerous studies have shown that human breast milk provides many health benefits. In many instances when mother's own breast milk is limited or not available, donor milk is recommended. The use of donor milk to feed high-risk premature infants has increased steadily in many neonatal intensive care units in the past 10 y, with the establishment of >25 human milk banks in North America that are affiliated with either the Human Milk Banking Association of North America or commercial organizations. The provision of donor milk rather than infant formula has been shown to improve the outcomes of very-low-birth-weight premature infants, especially in reducing feeding intolerance and necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC). However, some current studies have suggested that mother's own raw breast milk is superior to banked donor human milk with regard to some outcomes, including growth and sepsis.