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Human milk oligosaccharides, infant growth, and adiposity over the first 4 months of lactation

Abstract : BACKGROUND: The relationship between human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) and infant growth and adiposity is not fully understood and comprehensive studies are missing from the current literature. METHODS: We screened and recruited 370 healthy, pregnant women and their infants from seven European countries. Breastmilk samples were collected using standardized procedures at six time points over 4 months, as were infant parameters. Correlations and associations between HMO area under the curve, anthropometric data, and fat mass at 4 months were tested. RESULTS: Lacto-N-neotetraose had a negative correlation with the change in length (rs = -0.18, P = 0.02). Sialyllacto-N-tetraose c (LSTc) had a positive correlation with weight for length (rs = 0.19, P = 0.015). Infants at the 25th upper percentile were fed milk higher in 3'-sialyllactose and LSTc (P = 0.017 and P = 0.006, respectively) compared to the lower 25th percentile of the weight-for-length z-score gain over 4 months of lactation. No significant associations between growth and body composition and Lewis or secretor-dependent HMOs like 2'-fucosyllactose were identified. CONCLUSIONS: Changes in the HMO composition of breastmilk during the first 4 months appear to have little influence on infant growth and body composition in this cohort of healthy mothers and infants. IMPACT: Modest associations exist between individual HMO and infant growth outcomes at least in healthy growing populations. Our study provides a comprehensive investigation of associations between all major HMO and infant growth and adiposity including several time points. Certain groups of HMOs, like the sialylated, may be associated with adiposity during the first months of lactation. HMO may modulate the risk of future metabolic disease. Future population studies need to address the role of specific groups of HMOs in the context of health and disease to understand the long-term impact.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 9:54:46 AM
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A. Binia, L. Lavalle, C. Chen, S. Austin, M. Agosti, et al.. Human milk oligosaccharides, infant growth, and adiposity over the first 4 months of lactation. Pediatric Research, Nature Publishing Group, 2021, Online ahead of print. ⟨10.1038/s41390-020-01328-y⟩. ⟨inserm-03274415⟩



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