Prebiotics in healthy infants and children for prevention of acute infectious diseases

A systematic review and meta-analysis

Szimonetta Lohner, Daniela Küllenberg, Gerd Antes, T. Decsi, Joerg J. Meerpohl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Prebiotics, defined as nondigestible dietary ingredients resistant to gastric acidity and fermented by the intestinal flora, are used to positively influence the composition of intestinal flora, thereby promoting health benefits. The objective of this systematic review was to assess the efficacy of prebiotics in the prevention of acute infectious diseases in children. A systematic literature search was conducted using the Ovid Medline, Scopus, Web of Science, and Cochrane Library's Central databases. Finally, five randomized controlled trials, all of them investigating infants and children 0-24 months of age, were included in the review. Pooled estimates from three studies revealed a statistically significant decrease in the number of infectious episodes requiring antibiotic therapy in the prebiotic group as compared with the placebo group (rate ratio 0.68; 95% confidence interval 0.61-0.77). Studies available indicate that prebiotics may also be effective in decreasing the rate of overall infections in infants and children 0-24 months of age. Further studies in the age group 3-18 years are required to determine whether prebiotics can be considered for the prevention of acute infectious diseases in the older pediatric population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)523-531
Number of pages9
JournalNutrition Reviews
Volume72
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Fingerprint

Prebiotics
Acute Disease
Communicable Diseases
Meta-Analysis
Library Science
Insurance Benefits
Stomach
Randomized Controlled Trials
Age Groups
Placebos
Databases
Confidence Intervals
Pediatrics
Anti-Bacterial Agents
Infection
Population

Keywords

  • Acute infection
  • Oligosaccharide
  • Prebiotic
  • Prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

Prebiotics in healthy infants and children for prevention of acute infectious diseases : A systematic review and meta-analysis. / Lohner, Szimonetta; Küllenberg, Daniela; Antes, Gerd; Decsi, T.; Meerpohl, Joerg J.

In: Nutrition Reviews, Vol. 72, No. 8, 2014, p. 523-531.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lohner, Szimonetta ; Küllenberg, Daniela ; Antes, Gerd ; Decsi, T. ; Meerpohl, Joerg J. / Prebiotics in healthy infants and children for prevention of acute infectious diseases : A systematic review and meta-analysis. In: Nutrition Reviews. 2014 ; Vol. 72, No. 8. pp. 523-531.
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