Breast Milk Stem Cell Survival in Neonate's Gut, Entery into Neonate Circulation and Adaption by the Body

Author(s): Amit Ghosh*

Journal Name: Current Stem Cell Research & Therapy

Volume 15 , Issue 2 , 2020

Become EABM
Become Reviewer
Call for Editor


The stem cell exchange during pregnancy is thought to remain chimeras for life. Few studies recently revealed that maternal transfer of viable stem cells to the offspring continues even after birth during breastfeeding. Some of these stem cells are likely to be integrated into different organs (brain, blood, kidneys, and pancreas) including neurons and insulin-producing cells in the pancreas to become functional cells. This finding opens a new avenue for research on therapeutic uses of breast milk- derived stem cells.

Recently Dr. Foteini Hassiotou used glowing mice, which were genetically modified to express a gene called tdTomato that causes cells to appear red under fluorescence light. These mice were mated, and their babies were swapped with the pups of another, unmodified mother mouse. The new pups suckled the modified mouse and, as a result, obtained glowing red stem cells from breast milk. The study has never been replicated in humans, so it is not clear yet if the findings apply to humans as in the case of mice. However, the results of the study are the jumping-off points for future research on human breast milk stem cells and their possible application in stem cell therapies. Additional studies are necessary to understand the passage of human breast milk stem cells through the neonate’s GI tract, and passage to the systemic circulation.

Keywords: Stem cell, breast milk, mesenchymal stem cell, myoeptithelial cells, colostrum, neonate's.

Briere CE, Jensen T, McGrath JM, Young EE, Finck C. Stem-like cell characteristics from breast milk of mothers with preterm infants as compared to mothers with term infants. Breastfeed Med 2017; 12: 174-9.
[] [PMID: 28277748]
Twigger AJ, Hepworth AR, Lai CT, et al. Gene expression in breastmilk cells is associated with maternal and infant characteristics. Sci Rep 2015; 5: 12933.
[] [PMID: 26255679]
Patki S, Kadam S, Chandra V, Bhonde R. Human breast milk is a rich source of multipotent mesenchymal stem cells. Hum Cell 2010; 23(2): 35-40.
[] [PMID: 20712706]
Hassiotou F, Geddes DT, Hartmann PE. Cells in human milk: State of the science. J Hum Lact 2013; 29(2): 171-82.
[] [PMID: 23515088]
Fan Y, Chong YS, Choolani MA, Cregan MD, Chan JKY. Unravelling the mystery of stem/progenitor cells in human breast milk. PLoS One 2010; 5(12)e14421
[] [PMID: 21203434]
Indumathi S, Dhanasekaran M, Rajkumar JS, Sudarsanam D. Exploring the stem cell and non-stem cell constituents of human breast milk. Cytotechnology 2013; 65(3): 385-93.
[] [PMID: 22940915]
Hassiotou F, Heath B, Ocal O, et al. Breastmilk stem cell transfer from mother to neonatal organs. FASEB J 2014; 1(Suppl.): 216-4.
Aydın MŞ, Yiğit EN, Vatandaşlar E, Erdoğan E, Öztürk G. Transfer and integration of breast milk stem cells to the brain of suckling pups. Sci Rep 2018; 8(1): 14289.
[] [PMID: 30250150]
Hassiotou F, Geddes DT. Immune cell-mediated protection of the mammary gland and the infant during breastfeeding. Adv Nutr 2015; 6(3): 267-75.
[] [PMID: 25979492]
Cregan MD, Fan Y, Appelbee A, et al. Identification of nestin-positive putative mammary stem cells in human breastmilk. Cell Tissue Res 2007; 329(1): 129-36.
[] [PMID: 17440749]
Eirew P, Stingl J, Raouf A, et al. A method for quantifying normal human mammary epithelial stem cells with in vivo regenerative ability. Nat Med 2008; 14(12): 1384-9.
[] [PMID: 19029987]
Pichiri G, Lanzano D, Piras M, et al. Human breast milk stem cells: A new challenge for perinatologists. J Pediatr Neonat Individual Med 2016; 5(1)e050120
Hosseini SM, Talaei-khozani T, Sani M, Owrangi B. Differentiation of human breast-milk stem cells to neural stem cells and neurons. Neurol Res Int 2014; 2014: 8.
Jain L, Vidyasagar D, Xanthou M, Ghai V, Shimada S, Blend M. In vivo distribution of human milk leucocytes after ingestion by newborn baboons. Arch Dis Child 1989; 64(7 Spec No): 930-3.
Weiler IJ, Hickler W, Sprenger R. Demonstration that milk cells invade the suckling neonatal mouse. Am J Reprod Immunol 1983; 4(2): 95-8.
[] [PMID: 6650713]
Rothkötter HJ, Kirchhoff T, Pabst R. Lymphoid and non-lymphoid cells in the epithelium and lamina propria of intestinal mucosa of pigs. Gut 1994; 35(11): 1582-9.
[] [PMID: 7828977]
Li K, Yau FW, Fok TF, So KW, Li CK, Yuen PM. Haematopoietic stem and progenitor cells in human term and preterm neonatal blood. Vox Sang 2001; 80(3): 162-9.
[] [PMID: 11449956]
Wisgrill L, Schüller S, Bammer M, et al. Hematopoietic stem cells in neonates: any differences between very preterm and term neonates? PLoS One 2014; 9(9)e106717
[] [PMID: 25181353]
Chaudhary MJ, Mehta BM, Patel DH, Darji VB, Aparnathi KD. Characterisation and comparison of khoa prepared from camel milk with that from cow and buffalo milk. Int J Dairy Technol 2017; 70: 253-60.
Kaingade PM, Somasundaram I, Nikam AB, Sarang SA, Patel JS. Assessment of growth factors secreted by human breastmilk mesenchymal stem cells. Breastfeed Med 2016; 11(1): 26-31.
[] [PMID: 26670023]
Sahu MK, Singal A, Menon R, et al. Early enteral nutrition therapy in congenital cardiac repair postoperatively: A randomized, controlled pilot study. Ann Card Anaesth 2016; 19(4): 653-61.
[] [PMID: 27716696]

promotion: free to download

Rights & PermissionsPrintExport Cite as

Article Details

Year: 2020
Published on: 25 March, 2020
Page: [98 - 101]
Pages: 4
DOI: 10.2174/1574888X14666191107095728

Article Metrics

PDF: 32
PRC: 1