Document Detail

Innovations in infant milk feeding: from the past to the future.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20664212     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Innovation is important for life science and economy, but the value of innovation for public health depends on its impact on promoting health. Breastfeeding is not innovative but evolved slowly over 250-300 million years, yet its total benefits are not surpassed by more innovative ways of infant feeding. Until the 19th century, infants fed inadequate breast milk substitutes suffered from high mortality. In 1865 a major improvement was von Liebig's 'soup for infants', the first breast milk substitute based on chemical human milk analysis, soon followed by commercial applications. Other early innovations include whey protein-dominant formula, addition of specific carbohydrates to promote bifidobacteria ('prebiotic') and of live bacteria ('probiotic'), predecessors of apparently recent innovations. Opportunities for innovations exist since many outcomes in formula-fed infants do not match those in breastfed populations. Of concern, expected economic benefits through innovations may override scientific arguments. Business and marketing desires must be counterbalanced by independent pediatric and scientific evaluation. Developing innovations with relevant outcome effects is complex, costly and cannot be expected to occur every few years. Cooperation between academic investigators, small and medium enterprises with high innovative potential, and large industries promotes progress and should be facilitated, e.g. by public research funding.
Berthold Koletzko
Publication Detail:
Type:  Historical Article; Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2010-07-21
Journal Detail:
Title:  Nestlé Nutrition workshop series. Paediatric programme     Volume:  66     ISSN:  1661-6677     ISO Abbreviation:  Nestle Nutr Workshop Ser Pediatr Program     Publication Date:  2010  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-07-28     Completed Date:  2011-01-03     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101244056     Medline TA:  Nestle Nutr Workshop Ser Pediatr Program     Country:  Switzerland    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1-17     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2010 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Div. Metabolic and Nutritional Medicine, Dr. von Hauner Children's Hospital, University of Munich Medical Center, Munich, Germany.
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MeSH Terms
Breast Feeding
Child Nutrition Sciences / trends*
Diffusion of Innovation
Food Technology / trends*
Health Promotion / trends
History, 19th Century
History, 20th Century
History, 21st Century
Infant Formula* / chemistry,  economics,  history
Infant, Newborn
Lactation / physiology
Milk, Human / chemistry

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