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Title: Newborn feeding and infant phenotype
Author: Gale, Christopher Robert Keith
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2013
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Breastfeeding in infancy, when compared with formula feeding, is associated with a reduced incidence of components of the metabolic syndrome later in life. One potential mechanism is via an effect on lipid metabolism and storage, manifesting as altered adiposity and ectopic lipid deposition. I have examined the null hypothesis: no association is detectable between infant feeding and adiposity or ectopic lipid in infancy, through a meta-analysis of published studies and a prospective cohort study of healthy infants employing gold standard direct measurement techniques (magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy). Eleven studies were identified for meta-analysis: in formula-fed compared to breastfed infants, fat mass was lower at 3-4 months [mean difference (95% confidence interval)]: [-0.09 kg (-0.18, -0.01 kg)] and 6 months [-0.18 kg (- 0.34, -0.01 kg)]. Conversely, at 12 months, fat mass was higher in formula-fed infants [0.29 kg (-0.03, 0.61 kg)] than in breastfed infants. Eighty-seven infants were included in a prospective cohort, of which 73 were investigated at two time points. In healthy, term, breastfed infants adipose tissue accretion between birth and 2-3 months ages was predominantly within subcutaneous rather than internal adipose tissue compartments, and a significant increase in intrahepatocellular lipid was detected: median [interquartile range] 0.653 [0.367-1.900] after birth and 1.837 [1.408-2.429] at 2-3 months. Comparing breastfed with formula fed infants within this cohort no significant differences were detected in total adipose tissue, adipose tissue distribution or intrahepatocellular lipid between birth and 2-3 months. Significant associations were detected between maternal BMI, rate of weight gain in early infancy and gender, and adipose tissue partitioning at 2-3 months. While method of feeding is associated with altered infant fat mass up to 6 months, no association is detectable with adipose tissue partitioning or ectopic hepatic lipid at 2-3 months.
Supervisor: Bell, Jimmy ; Thomas, Elizabeth ; Modi, Neena Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available