Nesfatin-1 in human milk and its association with infant anthropometry

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  • Karina Dyrvig Honoré
  • Signe Bruun
  • Lotte Neergaard Jacobsen
  • Magnus Domellöf
  • Michaelsen, Kim F.
  • Steffen Husby
  • Gitte Zachariassen

Breastfed infants have different growth patterns to formula-fed infants and are less likely to develop obesity later in life. Nesfatin-1 is an anorexigenic adipokine that was discovered in human milk more than a decade ago, and its role in infant appetite regulation is not clear. Our aim was to describe nesfatin-1 levels in human milk collected 3-4 months postpartum, associations with infant anthropometry, and factors (maternal pre-pregnancy body mass index (mBMI), high weight gain during pregnancy, milk fat, and energy content) possibly influencing nesfatin-1 levels. We hypothesized that nesfatin-1 levels in mother's milk would differ for infants that were large (high weight-for-age Z-score (WAZ)) or small (low WAZ) at the time of milk sample collection. We used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay to detect the nesfatin-1 concentration in milk samples from mothers to high WAZ (n = 50) and low WAZ (n = 50) infants. We investigated associations between nesfatin-1 levels and infant anthropometry at 3-4 months of age and growth since birth, using linear regression adjusted for mBMI, birth weight, infant sex, and exclusivity of breastfeeding. We found no difference in nesfatin-1 levels between the two groups and no association with infant anthropometry, even after adjusting for potential confounders. However, high nesfatin-1 levels were correlated with low mBMI. Future research should investigate serum nesfatin-1 level in both mothers, infants and associations with growth in breastfed children.

Original languageEnglish
Article number176
Issue number1
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2023

    Research areas

  • Faculty of Science - Human milk components, Nesfatin-1, Appetite regulation, Infant anthropometry, Obesity

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