New approach shows no association between maternal milk fatty acid composition and childhood wheeze or asthma

C. A. Logan, S. Brandt, M. Wabitsch, H. Brenner, F. Wiens, B. Stahl, T. Marosvölgyi, T. Decsi, D. Rothenbacher, J. Genuneit

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    11 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    Background: Previous observational studies have implied breastmilk fatty acid composition may play a role in the development of atopic eczema or atopic sensitization in breastfed infants and toddlers. However, studies investigating associations with wheeze and asthma in later childhood are scarce and did not account for inherent correlation of compositional data. Our aim was to explore the association of maternal milk fatty acid composition with childhood wheezing phenotypes and asthma up to age 13 years using a new statistical approach. Methods: Breastmilk was collected 6 weeks and 6 months postdelivery in the Ulm Birth Cohort Study (n=720 and n=454, respectively). Concentrations of 28 fatty acids were measured by high-resolution capillary gas-liquid chromatography. To control for constant-sum constraint, concentration data were transformed using the centered log ratio method. Compositional biplots and correlation matrices were used to group centered log ratio transformed fatty acids. Adjusted risk ratios with parent-reported wheezing phenotypes and doctor-diagnosed asthma were computed using a modified Poisson regression. Results: We observed no straightforward evidence of associations between overall breastmilk fatty acid composition and specific wheeze phenotypes or doctor-diagnosed asthma. Conclusion: Using appropriate statistical methodology, we report null associations. These findings may partly be attributable to several cohort-specific factors associated with breastfeeding and breastmilk collection. Further studies could improve on ours by analyzing samples of breastmilk and formula and by including all children for whom these are exclusively or together the major source of fatty acids in the first months of life.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1374-1383
    Number of pages10
    JournalAllergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
    Volume72
    Issue number9
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Sep 2017

    Keywords

    • asthma
    • fatty acids
    • human milk
    • wheeze

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Immunology and Allergy
    • Immunology

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    Logan, C. A., Brandt, S., Wabitsch, M., Brenner, H., Wiens, F., Stahl, B., Marosvölgyi, T., Decsi, T., Rothenbacher, D., & Genuneit, J. (2017). New approach shows no association between maternal milk fatty acid composition and childhood wheeze or asthma. Allergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, 72(9), 1374-1383. https://doi.org/10.1111/all.13161