Clinical Benefits of Milk Fat Globule Membranes for Infants and Children

Olle Hernell, Niklas Timby, Magnus Domellöf, Bo Lönnerdal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

93 Scopus citations


The milk fat globule membrane (MFGM) in breast milk contains many bioactive components. Infant formulas traditionally have been devoid of the MFGM fraction, but dairy technology now has made the addition of bovine MFGM technically feasible. We identified 6 double-blinded randomized controlled trials exploring the effects of MFGM supplementation on the diets of infants or children. Results suggest that supplementation is safe and indicate positive effects on both neurodevelopment and defense against infections. MFGM supplementation of infant formula may narrow the gap in cognitive performance and infection rates between breastfed and formula-fed infants. Because of the small number of studies and the heterogeneity of interventions, more high-quality double-blinded randomized controlled trials are needed, with well characterized and clearly defined MFGM fractions, before firm conclusions on the effects of MFGM supplementation on the health and development of infants can be drawn.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S60-S65
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016


  • BFR Breastfed reference
  • DBRCT Double-blinded randomized controlled trial
  • EF Experimental formula
  • MFGM Milk fat globule membrane
  • MFGM-L Lipid-rich MFGM
  • MFGM-P Protein-rich MFGM
  • SF Standard formula

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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