Lactational Programming Meeting 16-19 November 2020

On 16-19 November 2020 the Lactational Programming Meeting took place, organized by the Developmental Psychobiology Lab.

Because of the known beneficial effects of breast milk on child health, the World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding until six months of age, and continued breastfeeding until at least the age of 2 years. Human breast milk is a complex food that, next to water and nutrients, contains thousands of essential molecules such as sugars, immune factors, micronutrients, and hormones. These milk constituents may have different and very specific effects on child development. Breast milk also contains live bacteria that may have an important role in colonizing the infant intestines. All these milk constituents may additionally impact child cognition and behavior. The intriguing hypothesis that biological constituents in breast milk shape offspring phenotype is known as Lactational Programming. Most of our knowledge on breast milk composition comes from animal studies, but the human field is awakening.

The aim of this hybrid meeting was to bring together senior and junior top researchers from different scientific disciplines and from all over the world, to discuss fundamental research insights and goals, as well as interdisciplinary projects, in the field of Lactational Programming.

We want to thank all the participants for the amazing days, the great discussions, and the collaborative atmosphere! We enjoyed every moment of the meeting. It was profoundly inspiring and enjoyable. We are now working hard to finalize a review paper based on the topics of the meeting. Stay tuned on our website for more news about this review paper.

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