Infants get protection against COVID-19 by antibodies in milk from mothers! Know more

Infants get protection against COVID-19 by antibodies in milk from mothers
Infants get protection against COVID-19 by antibodies in milk from mothers. Credit | Shutterstock

United States: There’s more evidence bolstering the health effects of both breastfeeding and the COVID-19 booster shot, as mothers who have received the COVID-19 vaccine and breastfeeding may effectively be able to transfer antibodies to their children.

Natural protection for infants against COVID-19

It is important as Six months is the age that matters most, considering that 6-month-old babies and below are not entitled to the COVID-19 vaccine.

Dr. Vivian Valcarce, the co-author of the study, stated, “We think that breast milk may play an important role in protecting the infants during the first six months of life from COVID.”

Valcarce added that providing immunity can even save younger lives, as “we continue to see babies being hospitalized from COVID-19 infections.”

Valcare has helped conduct the research while working at the University of Florida (UF) and is now an assistant professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, US News reported.

The findings of the study were published recently in the journal Frontiers in Medicine.

Outcomes of the studies

Visual Representation | Credit : Getty images

There are some studies that show women passed their defensive antibodies into nursing infants, after those women had received the vaccines for first-time exposure to the COVID-19 virus.

The latest report analyzed the impact of the COVID booster shot given last year on breast milk. The study used a case study approach wherein it documented the experiences of 14 breastfeeding moms who were caring for their infants.

Antibody levels were measured in the mother’s blood samples before and after booster administration and in her breast milk, and in each baby’s poop, as US News reported.

Once again, the study found that breast milk was passing over COVID-19 antibodies to infants who were still not old enough to receive the vaccination.

A booster vaccine for mom was critical since the antibody levels could drop off over time, the scientists observed.

According to US News reports, Joseph Larkin, an associate professor of microbiology and cell science at UF, said, “When babies are born, they have an immature immune system, so they rely heavily on mom’s immune system,” at a University release.

Adding further, “Breastfeeding can serve as a gap in between while babies are building their own immune system.”

Valcarce added that all of this “shows how important breast milk and breastfeeding is for infant health during a pandemic,” US News reported.