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JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 2018 Feb;42(2):446-454. doi: 10.1177/0148607117690527. Epub 2017 Dec 20.

Minimal Enteral Nutrition to Improve Adaptation After Intestinal Resection in Piglets and Infants.

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Hans Christian Andersen Children's Hospital, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.
Department of Surgery, University Hospital of Odense, Odense, Denmark.
Department of Veterinary Clinical and Animal Sciences, Frederiksberg C, Denmark.
Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen Ø, Denmark.
Global Research, Novo Nordisk, Måløv, Denmark.
Children's Nutrition Research Centre, Department of Paediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA.
Department of Gastroenterology, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen Ø, Denmark.



Minimal enteral nutrition (MEN) may induce a diet-dependent stimulation of gut adaptation following intestinal resection. Bovine colostrum is rich in growth factors, and we hypothesized that MEN with colostrum would stimulate intestinal adaptation, compared with formula, and would be well tolerated in patients with short bowel syndrome.


In experiment 1, 3-day-old piglets with 50% distal small intestinal resection were fed parenteral nutrition (PN, n = 10) or PN plus MEN given as either colostrum (PN-COL, n = 5) or formula (PN-FORM, n = 9) for 7 days. Intestinal nutrient absorption and histomorphometry were performed. In experiment 2, tolerance and feasibility of colostrum supplementation were tested in a pilot study on 5 infants who had undergone intestinal resection, and they were compared with 5 resected infants who served as controls.


In experiment 1, relative wet-weight absorption and intestinal villus height were higher in PN-COL vs PN (53% vs 23% and 362 ± 13 vs 329 ± 7 µm, P < .05). Crypt depth and tissue protein synthesis were higher in PN-COL (233 ± 7 µm, 22%/d) and PN-FORM (262 ± 13 µm, 22%/d) vs PN (190 ± 4 µm, 9%/d, both P < .05). In experiment 2, enteral colostrum supplementation was well tolerated, and no infants developed clinical signs of cow's milk allergy.


Minimal enteral nutrition feeding with bovine colostrum and formula induced similar intestinal adaptation after resection in piglets. Colostrum was well tolerated by newly resected infants, but the clinical indication for colostrum supplementation to infants subjected to intestinal resection remains to be determined.


enteral nutrition; gastroenterology; growth factors; life cycle; neonates; nutrition assessment; parenteral nutrition; surgery


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