Relationship Between Milk Fat Globule-Epidermal Growth Factor 8 and Intestinal Cytokines in Infants Born Preterm.
OBJECTIVES:To investigate the relationships between dietary intake and fecal concentrations of milk fat globule-epidermal growth factor 8 (MFG-E8), and between fecal concentrations of MFG-E8 and markers of intestinal inflammation in infants born preterm. STUDY DESIGN:Fecal samples were collected daily and enteral feedings were sampled weekly. MFG-E8 in enteral feedings and feces, and cytokine concentrations in feces were quantified by ELISA. RESULTS:Milk MFG-E8 concentrations were significantly greater in unfortified mother's own milk (MOM) and fortified mother's own milk (MOM+HMF) than either donor human milk or preterm formula. MFG-E8 concentrations in fecal samples were positively correlated with MFG-E8 concentrations in respective milks. High MFG-E8 exposure (>60 mL/kg/day of feedings that include MOM or MOM+HMF) was associated with lower concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines (interleukin-8, tumor necrosis factor-α, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) and higher concentrations of the anti-inflammatory cytokine interleukin-4 in feces, compared with low MFG-E8 exposure. CONCLUSION:Infants born preterm who were fed MOM had greater concentrations of MFG-E8 and lower concentrations of pro-inflammatory cytokines in fecal samples than other diets or no feedings. These data further support the protective role of MOM, possibly due to MFG-E8, against intestinal inflammation.
School of Medicine