Development of intestinal microflora during the first month of life in Estonian and Swedish infants

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Sepp, Epp ; Naaber, Paul ; Voor, Tiia ; Mikelsaar, Marika ; Björkstén, Bengt (2011)
  • Publisher: Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease
  • Journal: Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease (issn: 1651-2235, eissn: 1651-2235)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.3402/mehd.v12i1.8040

Little is known about possible regional differences in the development of the intestinal microflora in infants. The aim of the present study was therefore to compare the development of the microflora in Estonian and Swedish infants during the first month of life. The intestinal microflora of one week old and one month old Estonian (n=20) and Swedish (n=20) infants was studied by quantitative culture of faecal samples. All newborns were delivered vaginally and fed with breast milk during the first month of life. At one week of age the counts of aerobes (coagulase negative staphylococci, enterococci, enterobacteria) were higher in Estonian than in Swedish newborns. The counts of lactobacilli and candida increased in the Estonian infants over the first month of life, while the counts of enterobacteria increased in Swedish infants. At one month of age, the Estonian infants were more frequently colonised with lactobacilli than the Swedish infants and the counts were higher. Our data indicate that previously described differences in intestinal microflora of Estonian and Swedish 1 to 2 year old children are present already at the first month of life.Keywords: newborn, intestinal microflora, geographic differences.
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