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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2014;163(1):25-8. doi: 10.1159/000356338. Epub 2013 Nov 16.

Supplementation with probiotics in the first 6 months of life did not protect against eczema and allergy in at-risk Asian infants: a 5-year follow-up.

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Department of Paediatrics, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, Singapore, Singapore.



Healthy gut microflora is essential for oral tolerance and immunity. A promising approach to preventing allergic diseases in genetically at-risk infants is to introduce administration of probiotics early in life when their immune system is still relatively immature.


In this follow-up study, we aim to determine if early-life supplementation with strains of probiotics has any long-term effect on allergic outcomes.


We analyzed the charts and electronic databases of the PROMPT (Probiotics in Milk for the Prevention of Atopy Trial) study cohort. This cohort consisted of 253 infants at risk for allergy who were administered cow's milk supplemented with or without probiotics from the first day of life to the age of 6 months. The cohort was then followed up until the children were 5 years old and clinical outcomes were assessed.


Of the 253 children recruited into the study, 220 (87%) completed the follow-up. At the age of 5 years, there were no significant differences between the groups in the proportion of children who had developed any asthma, allergic rhinitis, eczema, food allergy and sensitization to inhalant allergens. Similar growth rates were observed in both groups.


The supplementation of probiotics in early childhood did not play a role in the prevention of allergic diseases. Clinical/Key Message: Early-life supplementation with probiotics did not change allergic outcomes at 5 years of age.

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