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Do probiotics in pregnancy reduce allergies and asthma in infancy and childhood? A systematic review

Do probiotics in pregnancy reduce allergies and asthma in infancy and childhood? A systematic review
Do probiotics in pregnancy reduce allergies and asthma in infancy and childhood? A systematic review
The maternal immune system is very important in the development of the foetal immune system. Probiotics have been shown to help regulate immune responses. Therefore, it is possible that the administration of probiotics to pregnant women could influence the development of the foetal immune system, reducing the likelihood of infants and children developing an allergic condition. The aim of this research was to conduct a systematic review to determine whether administering probiotics to pregnant women can reduce the incidence of allergic disease in their children. Medline, CINAHL and Embase databases were searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared supplementation of probiotics to pregnant women to a placebo control and recorded the presentation of allergic conditions in their children. Data extracted from the study reports included their characteristics and findings. Study quality and risk of bias were assessed. From a total of 850 articles identified in the search, 6 were eligible for inclusion in this review. Two studies found no effect of maternal probiotics on the outcomes measured, two studies found that the incidence of eczema or atopic dermatitis (AD) was reduced by maternal probiotics, one study found no effect on the overall incidence of atopic sensitisation, but a reduction in a subgroup of children at high hereditary risk of allergic disease, and one study found no effect in an intention to treat analysis, but a reduction in AD in complete case analysis. The results of these studies are inconsistent but demonstrate that probiotics may have the potential to reduce infant allergies when administered prenatally, particularly in children at high risk of allergy development. There is a need for further larger-scale studies to be performed in order to provide a more definitive answer. Such studies should focus on at-risk groups.


allergy, asthma, atopic dermatitis, childhood, eczema, immune development, infancy, microbiota, pregnancy, probiotic
2072-6643
Colquitt, Alexander S.
dff53a8c-a851-46f5-942c-a9634b4d47e5
Miles, Elizabeth
20332899-ecdb-4214-95bc-922dde36d416
Calder, Philip
1797e54f-378e-4dcb-80a4-3e30018f07a6
Colquitt, Alexander S.
dff53a8c-a851-46f5-942c-a9634b4d47e5
Miles, Elizabeth
20332899-ecdb-4214-95bc-922dde36d416
Calder, Philip
1797e54f-378e-4dcb-80a4-3e30018f07a6

Colquitt, Alexander S., Miles, Elizabeth and Calder, Philip (2022) Do probiotics in pregnancy reduce allergies and asthma in infancy and childhood? A systematic review. Nutrients, 14 (9), [1852]. (doi:10.3390/nu14091852).

Record type: Review

Abstract

The maternal immune system is very important in the development of the foetal immune system. Probiotics have been shown to help regulate immune responses. Therefore, it is possible that the administration of probiotics to pregnant women could influence the development of the foetal immune system, reducing the likelihood of infants and children developing an allergic condition. The aim of this research was to conduct a systematic review to determine whether administering probiotics to pregnant women can reduce the incidence of allergic disease in their children. Medline, CINAHL and Embase databases were searched for randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that compared supplementation of probiotics to pregnant women to a placebo control and recorded the presentation of allergic conditions in their children. Data extracted from the study reports included their characteristics and findings. Study quality and risk of bias were assessed. From a total of 850 articles identified in the search, 6 were eligible for inclusion in this review. Two studies found no effect of maternal probiotics on the outcomes measured, two studies found that the incidence of eczema or atopic dermatitis (AD) was reduced by maternal probiotics, one study found no effect on the overall incidence of atopic sensitisation, but a reduction in a subgroup of children at high hereditary risk of allergic disease, and one study found no effect in an intention to treat analysis, but a reduction in AD in complete case analysis. The results of these studies are inconsistent but demonstrate that probiotics may have the potential to reduce infant allergies when administered prenatally, particularly in children at high risk of allergy development. There is a need for further larger-scale studies to be performed in order to provide a more definitive answer. Such studies should focus on at-risk groups.


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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 27 April 2022
e-pub ahead of print date: 28 April 2022
Published date: 1 May 2022
Additional Information: Publisher Copyright: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
Keywords: allergy, asthma, atopic dermatitis, childhood, eczema, immune development, infancy, microbiota, pregnancy, probiotic

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 457078
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/457078
ISSN: 2072-6643
PURE UUID: 9fad2fe5-efda-4223-9c9d-9c93becc2b9b
ORCID for Elizabeth Miles: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-8643-0655
ORCID for Philip Calder: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-6038-710X

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 23 May 2022 16:55
Last modified: 25 Jun 2022 01:35

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Contributors

Author: Alexander S. Colquitt
Author: Elizabeth Miles ORCID iD
Author: Philip Calder ORCID iD

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