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Nutrients 2016, 8(11), 695;

Colostrum and Mature Human Milk of Women from London, Moscow, and Verona: Determinants of Immune Composition

Department of Paediatrics, Imperial College London, London W2 1NY, UK
International Inflammation (in-FLAME) Network of the World Universities Network, Sydney 2006, NSW, Australia
Faculty of Pediatrics, I. M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, Moscow 119991, Russia
Allergy Department, Veltischev Clinical Pediatric Research Institute of Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University, Moscow 125412, Russia
Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Section of Paediatrics, University of Pisa, 56126 Pisa, Italy
National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College London, London SW3 6NP, UK
Royal Holloway University of London School of Biological Sciences, Biomedical Sciences, London TW20 0EX, UK
Department of Life and Reproduction Sciences, Section of Paediatrics, University of Verona, 37124 Verona, Italy
School of Chemistry and Biochemistry, The University of Western Australia, Perth 6009, WA, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 August 2016 / Revised: 21 October 2016 / Accepted: 28 October 2016 / Published: 3 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrients in Infancy)
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Cytokines and growth factors in colostrum and mature milk may play an important role in infant immune maturation, and may vary significantly between populations. We aimed to examine associations between environmental and maternal factors, and human milk (HM) cytokine and growth factor levels. We recruited 398 pregnant/lactating women in the United Kingdom, Russia, and Italy. Participants underwent skin prick testing, questionnaire interview, and colostrum and mature milk sampling. HM cytokine and growth factor levels were quantified by electro-chemiluminescence. We found significant geographical variation in growth factor levels, but no evidence of variation between sites in cytokine detectability. There was an inverse correlation between time of milk sampling and growth factor levels in colostrum for Hepatocyte Growth Factor (HGF) and TGFβ1 and TGFβ3, but not TGFβ2, and levels were significantly higher in colostrum than mature milk for all growth factors. The kinetics of decline were different for each growth factor. Cytokines were present at much lower levels than growth factors, and the decline over time was less consistent. HM growth factors and cytokine levels vary between populations for unknown reasons. Levels of HM mediators decline at different rates postpartum, and these findings suggest specific biological roles for HM growth factors and cytokines in early postnatal development. View Full-Text
Keywords: colostrum; human milk; immune modulators; immunologically active molecules; cytokines; growth factors; environmental influence colostrum; human milk; immune modulators; immunologically active molecules; cytokines; growth factors; environmental influence

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Munblit, D.; Treneva, M.; Peroni, D.G.; Colicino, S.; Chow, L.; Dissanayeke, S.; Abrol, P.; Sheth, S.; Pampura, A.; Boner, A.L.; Geddes, D.T.; Boyle, R.J.; Warner, J.O. Colostrum and Mature Human Milk of Women from London, Moscow, and Verona: Determinants of Immune Composition. Nutrients 2016, 8, 695.

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