Lactoferrin is an iron-binding protein which is present in high concentrations in human milk. It is also present in bovine milk, albeit in low concentration. Lactoferrin has been shown to have bacteriostasis/bactericidal effects, being a component of the immune system, a growth factor, and an enhancer of iron absorption. These possible biological functions have led to interest in commercial applications of lactoferrin, and purified bovine lactoferrin and human recombinant lactoferrin are now available in large quantities. Lactoferrin has received attention as an additive in infant formulas, food supplements, and other health-benefit products. Various clinical trials to evaluate the efficacy of human recombinant or bovine lactoferrin have been conducted, showing feasibility of this multifunctional glycoprotein for pharmaceutical purposes in several diseases such as cancer, periodontal disorders, and wound healing.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)