Improved cognitive development among preterm infants attributable to early supplementation of human milk with docosahexaenoic acid and arachidonic acid

Christine HenriksenChristian A Drevon


The objective of our study was to evaluate the effect of supplementation with docosahexaenoic acid and arachidonic acid for human milk-fed preterm infants. The primary end point was cognitive development at 6 months of age. The study was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study among 141 infants with birth weights of <1500 g. The intervention with 32 mg of docosahexaenoic acid and 31 mg of arachidonic acid per 100 mL of human milk started 1 week after birth and lasted until discharge from the hospital (on average, 9 weeks). Cognitive development was evaluated at 6 months of age by using the Ages and Stages Questionnaire and event-related potentials, a measure of brain correlates related to recognition memory. There was no difference in adverse events or growth between the 2 groups. At the 6-month follow-up evaluation, the intervention group performed better on the problem-solving subscore, compared with the control group (53.4 vs 49.5 points). There was also a nonsignificant higher total score (221 vs 215 points). The event-related potential data revealed that infants in the intervention group had significantly lower responses after the standard image, compared with the control group (8.6 vs 13.2). There was no diff...Continue Reading


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Related Concepts

Docosahexaenoic acid
Arachidonic Acid
Docosahexaenoic Acids
Adverse Event
Neonatal Prematurity
Infant Development
Milk, Human
Potentials, Event-Related
Arachidonic Acid Measurement
Very Low Birth Weight

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