Unlike many children's live cultures on the market 'For babies & children' has been clinically trialled as a finished product formula. All three strains contained in 'For babies & children' have been tested and proven to survive stomach acidity and to reach the gut alive. They are Lactobacillus acidophilus Rosell-52, Bifidobacterium infantis Rosell-33, and Bifidobacterium bifidum Rosell-71). This natural supplement also contains FOS fibres.

What the research tells us

In May 2009 the Institut Rosell led a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled study on OptiBac 'For babies & children' and found that the combination of probiotics and prebiotics could reduce the incidence of infant infections by 25%. The synbiotic was shown to reduce the incidence of Ear-nose-throat (ENT), bronchopulmonary or gastric disorder in children during the winter season. We've talked more about this trial in our clinical trials blogpost - click here to read more.

More recent findings

In January 2017 a multi-centre randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of 221 healthy infants was conducted by the University of Madrid, looking at the safety and tolerance of the three strains of bacteria in 'For babies & children' (Bifidobacterium infantis Rosell-33, Lactobacillus acidophilus Rosell-52 and Bifidobacterium bifidum Rosell-71)2. The infants were divided in to four groups and each group was given either one of the three strains of probiotic bacteria or a placebo for an eight week intervention period. (Dosage used in the probiotic group was 3 Billion cfu). The study collected data on growth of the infants (weight, height and head circumference), any adverse events (AEs) or serious adverse events (SAE's), amounts of D-lactic acid in urine samples and stool characteristics. The results showed that changes in growth measurements were the same across all four groups, as were the incidence of adverse and serious adverse events. The study concluded that these three strains of bacteria are safe and well-tolerated in infancy.

A year earlier a different clinical trial had shown that the frequency of respiratory infections and wheezing in children, with and without asthma, significantly decreased after 3 months of supplementing with the synbiotic supplement3. Children would typically experience an infection at least once per month, but after 3 months of taking this probiotic it became a rare occurrence; after 6 months, infection and wheezing rate was under control with no incidence recorded for any of the children. These results were maintained with supplementation 9 months into the trial. The table below reflects the results.

Frequency of wheezing and respiratory infections in children during synbiotic supplementation

table showing results from asthma study


There was also a progressive increase in the total IgA serum and a decrease in IgE serum which was maintained during supplementation with the synbiotic. IgE has been known to play a crucial role in mediating allergic reactions and asthma. Low levels of IgA during childhood has been associated with a higher risk of developing asthma and allergies. Click here to read more about the clinical trial.

Further reading

Cazzola, M. et al. (2010)Immunomodulatory impact of synbiotic in TH1 and TH2 models of infection; Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease 0(0) pp. 1-13

Cazzola, M. et al. (2010) Efficacy of a synbiotic supplementation in the prevention of common diseases in children: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study; Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease 0(0) pp. 1-8

References:

1 Cazzola, M. et al. (2010) Efficacy of a synbiotic supplementation in the prevention of common diseases in children: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study; Therapeutic Advances in Respiratory Disease 0(0) pp. 1-8

2 Beneficial Microbes on-line, 2017. 'Safety and tolerance of three probiotic strains in healthy infants: a multi-centre randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trial'. Authors: S.Manzano, J.De Andres, I. Castro, J.M Rodriguez, E. Jimenez and I. Espinosa-Martos.

3 Stojkovic, A., & Simovic, M. A. (2016). Clinical trial/experimental study (consort compliant): Optimal time period to achieve the effects on synbiotic-controlled wheezing and respiratory infections in young children. Serbian Journal of Management, 38-43.

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