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BioGaia AB Announces Lactobacillus Reuteri Protectis Prevents Necrotizing Enterocolitis in Premature Infants

Friday, 7 Sep 2012 05:00am EDT 

BioGaia AB announced that retrospective sequential analysis of 311 premature infants, born with a weight below 1000 grams, showed that the prophylactic supplementation of Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis resulted in a reduction in necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), a common gastrointestinal cause of death and illness in premature infants. NEC has a death rate of between 20% and 30%. Since the introduction of preventive supplementation of Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis to all premature infants in the neonatal intensive care unit where the study was performed, one case of NEC was avoided for every eight infants treated. In the retrospective cohort sequential analysis, medical records for 311 premature infants were reviewed, 232 in the years before introduction of Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis prophylaxis (January 2004 - June 2009) and 79 who received Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis prophylaxis (June 2009 - April 2011). The review compared the rates of NEC in premature infants. The incidence of NEC was significantly lower in the infants who received Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis, 2 of 79 infants (2.5%) compared to 35 of 232 (15.1%) of the untreated infants (p=0.0475). No adverse events related to the use of Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis were noted. The preventive supplementation of Lactobacillus reuteri Protectis resulted in the avoidance of one case of NEC for every eight infants treated (NNT=8). 

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