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Probiotics protect against death, NEC in preemies

01 Sep 2020
Researchers discovered that one of the six genes, which affect whether a woman is likely to have a preterm baby, is linked with the metabolism of selenium.

Probiotics appear to be beneficial to preterm, low-birthweight infants, reducing the risk of death and necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), reports a new meta-analysis.

From the databases of Medline, Embase, CINAHL, Cochrane Central, Scopus, BIOSIS Previews, Google Scholar, and Science Citation Index Expanded, researchers retrieved 63 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) corresponding to 15,712 preterm infants. Most of the multiple-strain probiotics contained Lactobacillus spp with Bifidobacterium spp; nearly half of all single-strain probiotics used Lactobacillus spp.

Pooled analysis of high-certainty evidence showed that the combination of Lactobacillus spp and Bifidobacterium spp almost halved the risk of all-cause mortality relative to placebo (odds ratio [OR], 0.56, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.39–0.80; risk difference [RD], –2.2 percent; 95 percent CI, –3.1 to –0.1).

Similarly, analysis of high- and moderate-certainty evidence showed that combinations of Lactobacillus spp and Bifidobacterium spp were strong suppressors of NEC risk (OR, 0.35, 95 percent CI, 0.20–0.59; RD, –4.1 percent, 95 percent CI, –5.1 to –2.6). Comparable effects were reported for Bifidobacterium animalis subsp lactis, L. reuteri, and Lactobacillus rhamnosus.

Shortcomings in the literature disallowed a statistically strong analysis of the effect of probiotics on culture-proven late-onset sepsis and feed intolerance.

“Moderate-to-high certainty evidence demonstrates the superiority of combinations of one or more Lactobacillus spp and one or more Bifidobacterium spp over alternative single- and multiple-strain probiotic treatments,” researchers said. “Multicentre and large RCT should be prioritized to distinguish between the efficacy of single- and multiple-strain probiotics among preterm infants.”

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Most Read Articles
2 days ago
Chest pain appears to be the principal complaint of patients hospitalized with a first myocardial infarction (MI), particularly among those in the youngest age group, a study has found.
Jairia Dela Cruz, 16 Sep 2020
In patients with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) receiving angiotensin-converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, high dosing confers benefits for the risk of death or hospitalization that are similar to that obtained with lower dosing, according to a systematic review and meta-analysis.
Pearl Toh, 2 days ago
Early and sustained treatments with simplified regimen are the key to achieving good asthma control, said experts during a presentation at the ERS 2020 Congress.
3 days ago
Women with pre-eclampsia are at higher risk of developing heart failure, a study suggests.