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Neonatal Netw. 2007 Jan-Feb;26(1):57-60.

Immunomodulation, Part V: probiotics.

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  • All Children's Hospital, Saint Petersburg, Florida, USA.

Abstract

The five-part "Pointers in Practical Pharmacology" immunomodulation series has presented some of the agents researchers are investigating in hopes of finding the means to effectively prevent and treat infectious processes in neonates. The phosphodiesterase inhibitor pentoxifylline appears promising, but large, randomized, clinical trials are still lacking. So far, there is no clear evidence to support the use of G-CSF for either the prevention or the treatment of sepsis. The results of a large, randomized, clinical trial of G-CSF in the United Kingdom are pending. Although intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) therapy does not appear to be useful in the prevention of sepsis, its effectiveness in the treatment of sepsis is uncertain. It is hoped that the results of the International Neonatal Immunotherapy Study will provide definitive answers regarding treatment of sepsis with IVIG. The "conditionally essential" amino acid glutamine administered either enterally or parenterally does not make a difference in the rate of systemic infection or NEC in very low birth weight infants. Finally, probiotics appear promising as documented by at least two of the three randomized, clinical trials described here. As the search continues for agents to enhance the neonate's immune system and prevent and treat infectious diseases, remember that our best prevention tool is excellent and consistent hand hygiene.

PMID:
17285888
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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