Saturday, May 24, 2008

"There is a desire..." bacteria, food, & breastfeeding


photo by Mariah McClain
Patent # 5902743 says, "There is a desire to provide women with the option to replace human breastmilk with manufactured formula/foods."
Patent #590274 is called, "Probiotic bifidobacterium strain, filed in 1998 by Luchansky et al and owned by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Association. Luchansky was a professor at the University of Wisconsin and is now a research microbiologist for the USDA (for the Microbial Food Safety Research Unit). In this patent, it is stated that breastmilk appears to be prebiotic and a Bifido strain is isolated, cultured, and deposited with The Amercian Type Culture Collection (ATCC)--Bifidobacterium longum JBL. The isolate was derived from the feces of a breastfed infant. The uses for this bacteria are very specific--Carnation Good Start and Gerber baby foods as well as food and drinks for adults. The bacteria derived from the feces of the breastfed infant is probiotic.
Surprised? No, you shouldn't be.
There is a patent from 1976 called, "Fermented milk containing viable bifidobacterium." Patents inventors are Masahiko Hutai et al. and the patent is owned by a Japanese company called Kabushiki Kaisha Yakult Honsha. They state, "Bifidobacteria are well-known as dominant bacteria in the intestinal fora of a breast-fed infant." The new strain they discovered was from the feces of the breastfed infant. A patent #4756913, called Sour milk product,: filed in 1987 by Russian inventors Khorkova eet al. says, "A disbalance in an infant's intestinal microflora due to lack of human milk, dysbacteriosis, antibiotic therapy or intestinal infection results in sudden decrease in the number of bifidbacteria conductive to pathogenesis of prolonged disfuntions and metabolic failures and very often causes severe chronical diseases in children."
More interesting are the patents owned by the infant formula industry. Patent # 6083934 called "Nutritional formulations containing Lacto-N-neoTetraose," by Prieto et al, filed in 1999, and owned by Abbott states that Lacto-N-neoTetraose was isolated from pooled human milk and that it also can be made synthetically. This Abbott patent states, "Lacto-N-neoTetraose stimulates growth and/or metabolic activity of Bifidobacteria inhibiting bacterial infections caused by Bacteroides, Clostridium, and E.coli." And then we also have a patent by Wyeth by inventor Jeffrey L. Wilson called, "Nutritional formulation containing prebiotic substances." (patent #6630452) It states, "A nutritional composition is provided which comprise oligofructose and sialyllactose." The oligofructose will be derived from chicory. The sialyllactose is a human milk component. "Sialyllactoses are oligosaccharides which occur naturally in human milk as well as milk of other mammals....present in noticeably higher concentrations in human milk." The combination of chicory and silayllactose produces a prebiotic effect...increasing bifidobacteria. Last but not least is a patent owned by Nestec (Nestle) called "Lactic acid bacteria for the treatment and/or prophylaxis of giardiasis." (patent # 7229616) It has many references but of interest to many of us who are IBCLCs is the reference to a study, "Reiner et al. "Human Milk Kills Giardia lamblia by Generating Toxic Liploytic Products" The Journal of Infections Diseases vol 154.no.5, 1986, pp 832-835."
This Nestle patent used a novel lactic acid bacteria and bifidobacteria. Yes, there is a desire to provide women with options to feeding their infants. Choice, the bedrock of infant feeding and women's liberation. While the industry liberates human milk components from women or the results of human milk feeding from babies, it tells us there is a desire. Desire....
Copyright 2008 Valerie W. McClain

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