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Table of Contents
Vol. 55, No. 4, 2009
Issue release date: December 2009
Section title: Original Paper
Free Access
Ann Nutr Metab 2009;55:334–340

The Effect of Bifidobacterium lactis on the Growth of Infants: A Pooled Analysis of Randomized Controlled Studies

Steenhout P.G.a · Rochat F.b · Hager C.b
aNestlé Nutrition, Nestec Ltd., Vevey, and bNestlé Research Center, Lausanne, Switzerland
email Corresponding Author

Philippe G. Steenhout

Nestlé Nutrition

Av. Reller 22

CH–1800 Vevey (Switzerland)

Tel. +41 21 924 2974, Fax +41 21 924 4527, E-Mail philippe.steenhout@nestle.com

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Background/Aims: Breast milk is the best source of nutrition for the growth of the newborn infant. It is therefore essential that mothers who cannot breastfeed or choose not to are provided with alternatives that closely match the composition and functionality of breast milk. This study aimed to investigate the growth effects of probiotic-supplemented formulas on both healthy and vulnerable populations of infants. Methods: A meta-analysis of data from 5 randomized controlled clinical trials that included infants fed formulas containing a probiotic Bifidobacterium lactis CNCM I-3446 was performed (n = 525). A sub-analysis was performed among infants of HIV-positive mothers (n = 120). Growth measurements (gain in weight and body mass index, BMI, from enrollment to 120 days) were compared between infants fed a formula containing B. lactis and those fed a control formula. Changes in length and Z-scores were also compared. Results: Formula with B.lactis was demonstrated to be at least as good as formula without B. lactis in the meta-analysis of 5 studies. The lower boundary of the 95% confidence interval (CI) of the differences in mean weight gain (95% CI 0.09–2.93 g/day) was above the predefined non-inferiority margin of –3.0 g/day. Moreover, among infants with HIV-positive mothers, weight gain of those taking B. lactis was significantly higher than of those not taking B. lactis, by 3.1 g/day (95% CI 0.4–5.8 g/day, p = 0.0226) and the BMI gains were significantly higher, by 6.4 g/m2/day (95% CI 0.0.3–12.5 g/m2/day, p = 0.0400). The corresponding weight for age and BMI Z-scores were also significantly higher, by 0.37 (95% CI 0.03–0.71, p = 0.0308) and by 0.42 (95% CI 0.02–0.83, p = 0.0377), respectively, whereas differences in length gain or length-for-age Z-score were not significant. Among infants in the non-HIV mothers group, there were no significant differences between infants fed formulas with or without B. lactis, for any of the growth parameters. Conclusions: The analysis suggests that B. lactis may have a positive effect on growth in vulnerable populations, specifically in infants born to mothers with HIV.

© 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel

Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: January 15, 2009
Accepted: September 02, 2009
Published online: October 16, 2009
Issue release date: December 2009

Number of Print Pages: 7
Number of Figures: 2
Number of Tables: 6

ISSN: 0250-6807 (Print)
eISSN: 1421-9697 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/ANM

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