New evidence that lactoferrin reduces the prevalence of tummy troubles in toddlers

Lactoferrin is receiving increased interest from researchers for its beneficial effects on the immune system in infants and younger children. Recent Japanese research showed children with an increased dietary lactoferrin intake had a 33% reduction in the prevalence of diarrhea, vomiting and fatigue. The study involved children aged 12 – 32 months old that were given growing up milk with added lactoferrin and then compared to a “control” group that did not receive the added lactoferrin.

This research builds on a significant database of scientific knowledge that supplement manufacturers can utilise to develop nutrition products containing lactoferrin. Consumer demand is increasing for immune products. The proportion of families that have both parents in the workforce is increasing, which also increases the time children spend in pre-school or daycare. This opens opportunities to help parents support the health of their children’s immune system and minimise the impacts of acute gastrointestinal symptoms for kids and parents alike.

Further information on the study results below.

Effects of Lactoferrin-Fortified Formula on Acute Gastrointestinal Symptoms in Children Aged 12–32 Months: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial
A randomised, double-blind, placebo controlled study by Motoki et al. in 2020 evaluated the efficacy of lactoferrin from cows milk (bLf) added to growing up milk in preschool aged children. The primary study outcome was the prevalence of respiratory and gastrointestinal symptoms. Japanese children aged 12-32months were enrolled in the study and randomised into two groups, 101 children completed study. The 53 children in the treatment group were provided 48mg of bLf a day, added to a growing up milk. While the 48 children in the control group received only growing up milk. The prevalence of symptoms was reported by parents during the 13 week trial.Those children in the treatment group demonstrated a 33% reduction in the prevalence of acute gastrointestinal symptoms, which include diarrhea, vomiting and fatigue whereas the acute respiratory symptoms were comparable between the groups.

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The study highlights the consumption of lactoferrin in growing up milk supports a decrease in the prevalence of acute gastrointestinal symptoms in children 12 – 32months.

Full study: Motoki N, et al. (2020) Effects of Lactoferrin-Fortified Formula on Acute Gastrointestinal Symptoms in ChildrenAged 12–32 Months: A Randomized,Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Front. Pediatr. 8:233. doi: 10.3389/fped.2020.00233

New Inferrin® assists in delivering the benefits of lactoferrin

Bega Bionutrients is launching Inferrin®, a form of microencapsulated lactoferrin. The microencapsulation can help deliver the benefits of lactoferrin by protecting it from degradation in conditions found in the stomach. Inferrin® opens up new benefits and applications for lactoferrin based products including foods and dietary supplements.

An initial pilot clinical trial on Inferrin® has shown promising results. In a double-blind, randomised, controlled, cross-over trial in healthy males, Inferrin® demonstrated effects on immune markers and the gut microbiome. The study also showed higher levels of lactoferrin in the faecal matter in those consuming Inferrin®. This suggests Inferrin® is indeed surviving degradation in the stomach and influencing the gut microbiome. “We are very excited by these results, and we are already planning to commence a larger scale clinical study later this year to follow up on these results.” said Dr Bradley Coleman, Business Manager of Bega Bionutrients.

“Lactoferrin has been extensively studied and documented for its multiple health benefits in adults and infants. But as a protein, lactoferrin is at risk of being broken down in the mature stomach before it can reach the small intestine, where it is believed much of its activity takes place, said Dr Coleman. ” Understanding this issue, we worked with Australian encapsulation company Progel Pty Ltd and the University of Queensland to develop a form of lactoferrin that is protected through the stomach and released intact in the small intestine. Using Progel™ novel and patented microencapsulation technology, we developed Inferrin – lactoferrin microencapsulated in common food grade materials. Inferrin will open new market opportunities for our customers and supports innovative product applications.

Inferrin is ideal for use in foods and dietary supplements. The unique microencapsulation technology allows Inferrin to use in a wide variety of delivery formats including gels, powders and liquids, as well as the more traditional tablets and capsules.

The installation of the microencapsulation technology at Bega’s Tatura Milk Industries facility in Victoria, Australia strengthens Bega’s product development and production capabilities in specialty ingredients and life-stage nutritionals.

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