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This project is one of the seven winners of the «Microbials - Direct Use of Micro-Organisms», call 2019. Project partners: Food Biotechnology Laboratory - ETH Zürich; Gastroenterology and Nutrition Unit of the Children’s Hospital Zürich (KISPI), ETH Foundation
Project no: GRS-078/19
Amount of funding: CHF 300'000
Duration: 02.2020 - 08.2022
Area of activity:
Microbials, seit 2016
PhD Vanesa Natalin Rocha Martin
Laboratory of Food Biotechnology, Institute of Food, Nutrition and Health, Dept of Health Sciences and Technology
8092 Zürich (Schweiz)
- vanesa.rocha@hest. ethz. ch
Infant Colic (IC) affects up to 20% of infants younger than three months. Colic babies experience prolonged and inconsolable crying, which affect the infants and parents' life, and are frequent trigger for abusive head trauma: “Shaken Baby Syndrome”. IC is defined as sudden fussing or crying lasting more than three hours per day and occurring at least three days each week and for at least one week. There is currently no treatment with proven efficacy on IC.
Our studies involving infant cohorts, animal and in vitro models, provide scientific evidence on the role of the gut microbiota metabolism as cause of IC. Our goal is to develop the first mechanistic-based live microbial product for prevention and treatment of IC. The current project will allow the translation of our scientific discoveries into a probiotic solution that will improve infant health and family well-being.
What is special about the project?
This project is based on a strong scientific background and data built on more than 12 years of research on IC by the Food Biotechnology Laboratory - ETH Zürich and in collaboration with the Gastroenterology and Nutrition Unit - KISPI. The proposed project has a unique mechanistic basis for the approach and will result in the development of a probiotic solution for the alleviation of IC. It will provide the required data for conducting a clinical study protocol in infants involving 3-4 clinical centers in different EU countries to demonstrate efficacy of the final product in the alleviation of IC.
The project started on 01.02.2020. Stage 1 objective to identify candidate strains has been successfully achieved by 30.10.2020. In Stage 2, the efficacy of four selected candidate strains will be tested in a pre-clinical infant-microbiota associated (IMA) rodent model of IC. The final goal of this project is to develop a probiotic formulation to include in supplemented infant formula and drops with proven clinical efficacy for the alleviation of Infant Colic.
Rocha Martin, V.N., Schwab, C., Krych, L., Voney, E., Geirnaert, A., Braegger, C., Lacroix, C. 2019. Colonization of Cutibacterium avidum during infant gut microbiota establishment. FEMS Microbiol Ecol 95, fiy215.
Pham VT, Chassard C, Rifa E, Braegger C, Geirnaert A, Rocha Martin VN, Lacroix C. 2019. Lactate metabolism is strongly modulated by fecal inoculum, pH, and retention time in PolyFermS continuous colonic fermentation models mimicking young infant proximal colon. msystems 4:e00264-18.
Pham, V.T., Lacroix, C., Braegger, C.P., Chassard, C. 2017. Lactate-utilizing community is associated with gut microbiota dysbiosis in colicky infants. Sci Rep 7, 11176.
Persons involved in the project
Last update to this project presentation 05.07.2022