Document Detail

Maternal antibodies in breast milk protect the child from enterovirus infections.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17473095     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
OBJECTIVE: Enterovirus infections are frequent in infants and may cause severe complications. We set out to assess whether breastfeeding can protect against these infections and whether such an effect is related to maternal antibodies in breast milk or in the peripheral circulation of the infant. METHODS: One hundred fifty infants who were prospectively followed up from birth were monitored for enterovirus infections. The duration of breastfeeding was recorded, and maternal breast milk and blood samples were regularly taken at 3-month intervals for the detection of enterovirus antibodies and RNA. Maternal serum was available from early pregnancy, delivery, and 3 months postpartum. RESULTS: Enterovirus infections were frequent and were diagnosed in 43% of infants before the age of 1 year and in 15% of the mothers during pregnancy. Infants exclusively breastfed for >2 weeks had fewer enterovirus infections by the age of 1 year compared with those exclusively breastfed for < or =2 weeks (0.38 vs 0.59 infections per child). High maternal antibody levels in serum and in breast milk were associated with a reduced frequency of infections. This effect was seen only in those infants breastfed >2 weeks, indicating that breast milk antibodies mediate this effect. Enterovirus RNA was not found in any of the breast milk samples. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that breastfeeding has a protective effect against enterovirus infections in infancy. This effect seems to be mediated primarily by maternal antibodies in breast milk.
Karita Sadeharju; Mikael Knip; Suvi M Virtanen; Erkki Savilahti; Sisko Tauriainen; Pentti Koskela; Hans K Akerblom; Heikki Hyöty;
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Multicenter Study; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Pediatrics     Volume:  119     ISSN:  1098-4275     ISO Abbreviation:  Pediatrics     Publication Date:  2007 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-05-02     Completed Date:  2007-05-29     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0376422     Medline TA:  Pediatrics     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  941-6     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Department of Virology, University of Tampere and Tampere University Hospital, Tampere, Finland.
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MeSH Terms
Antibodies, Viral / administration & dosage*,  blood
Breast Feeding
Enterovirus Infections / immunology*,  prevention & control*
Follow-Up Studies
Infant, Newborn
Milk, Human / immunology*
Pilot Projects
Prospective Studies
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Antibodies, Viral

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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