Jose Simon Camelo Junior from the Universidade Federal de São Paulo in Brazil will test a method for producing a lyophilized human milk concentrate for feeding very low birth weight newborns that can be implemented in developing countries. Very small premature babies of less than 1,500 grams require large quantities of proteins, calories, minerals, micronutrients and electrolytes to survive and thrive. However, breast milk alone is not concentrated enough. Supplements derived from cow's milk have been used but appear to inhibit particularly the immunological quality of human breast milk, which helps block infection. Human milk additives have now also been tested and show promising results, but they are prohibitively expensive to produce in developing countries. They will use a simple method involving evaporation, centrifugation and lyophilization to produce a concentrated form of human milk that can be implemented in Brazilian milk banks. The milk product will be evaluated for stability and safety and for nutritional content to ensure it contains adequate concentrations of essential nutrients within manageable volumes to support very low weight newborns.
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