[Literature Summary] Antibodies to protect against COVID-19 diseases in human milk

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Obstetrics / Gynaecology Paediatrics Public health Nutrition & Disease Management
[Literature Summary] Antibodies to protect against COVID-19 diseases in human milk

Breastfeeding offers a wide range of health benefits to both mothers and children. A recent study added another potential benefit - protection against COVID-19 diseases.

  • Investigators examined the presence and the levels of antibodies reactive to SARS-CoV-2 S1 and S2 subunits and nucleocapsid proteins in human milk from two groups, [1] 42 mothers during the COVID-19 pandemic (2020-HM) and [2] 16 women 2 years prior to the outbreak (2018-HM).
  • SARS-CoV-2-reactive antibodies were detected in high proportion of human milk samples. Levels of SARS-CoV-2 S1 + S2- and nucleocapsid-reactive IgG were higher in 2020-HM group versus 2018-HM. Levels of SIgA/IgA and SIgM/IgM reactive to S1 + S2 and nucleocapsid were comparable between 2020-HM and 2018-HM.
  • Presence of SARS-CoV-2-reactive antibodies in human milk may provide passive immunization to the breastfed infants against COVID-19 diseases.


Link to Publication: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7461757/


Demers-Mathieu V et al. Difference in levels of SARS-CoV-2 S1 and S2 subunits- and nucleocapsid protein-reactive SIgM/IgM, IgG and SIgA/IgA antibodies in human milk. J Perinatol. 2020;10.1038/s41372-020-00805-w.


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