Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants

Craig L. Jensen, Robert G. Voigt, Antolin M. Llorente, Sarika U. Peters, Thomas C. Prager, Yali L. Zou, Judith C. Rozelle, Marie R. Turcich, J. Kennard Fraley, Robert E. Anderson, William C. Heird

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Abstract

Objective: We previously reported better psychomotor development at 30 months of age in infants whose mothers received a docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3) supplement for the first 4 months of lactation. We now assess neuropsychological and visual function of the same children at 5 years of age. Study design: Breastfeeding women were assigned to receive identical capsules containing either a high-DHA algal oil (∼200 mg/d of DHA) or a vegetable oil (containing no DHA) from delivery until 4 months postpartum. Primary outcome variables at 5 years of age were measures of gross and fine motor function, perceptual/visual-motor function, attention, executive function, verbal skills, and visual function of the recipient children at 5 years of age. Results: There were no differences in visual function as assessed by the Bailey-Lovie acuity chart, transient visual evoked potential or sweep visual evoked potential testing between children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo. Children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo performed significantly better on the Sustained Attention Subscale of the Leiter International Performance Scale (46.5 ± 8.9 vs 41.9 ± 9.3, P < .008) but there were no statistically significant differences between groups on other neuropsychological domains. Conclusions: Five-year-old children whose mothers received modest DHA supplementation versus placebo for the first 4 months of breastfeeding performed better on a test of sustained attention. This, along with the previously reported better performance of the children of DHA-supplemented mothers on a test of psychomotor development at 30 months of age, suggests that DHA intake during early infancy confers long-term benefits on specific aspects of neurodevelopment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)900-905
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
Volume157
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2010

Fingerprint

Docosahexaenoic Acids
Visual Acuity
Breast
Mothers
Visual Evoked Potentials
Placebos
Breast Feeding
Plant Oils
Executive Function
Lactation
Postpartum Period
Capsules
Oils

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

Cite this

Jensen, Craig L. ; Voigt, Robert G. ; Llorente, Antolin M. ; Peters, Sarika U. ; Prager, Thomas C. ; Zou, Yali L. ; Rozelle, Judith C. ; Turcich, Marie R. ; Fraley, J. Kennard ; Anderson, Robert E. ; Heird, William C. / Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants. In: Journal of Pediatrics. 2010 ; Vol. 157, No. 6. pp. 900-905.
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title = "Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants",
abstract = "Objective: We previously reported better psychomotor development at 30 months of age in infants whose mothers received a docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3) supplement for the first 4 months of lactation. We now assess neuropsychological and visual function of the same children at 5 years of age. Study design: Breastfeeding women were assigned to receive identical capsules containing either a high-DHA algal oil (∼200 mg/d of DHA) or a vegetable oil (containing no DHA) from delivery until 4 months postpartum. Primary outcome variables at 5 years of age were measures of gross and fine motor function, perceptual/visual-motor function, attention, executive function, verbal skills, and visual function of the recipient children at 5 years of age. Results: There were no differences in visual function as assessed by the Bailey-Lovie acuity chart, transient visual evoked potential or sweep visual evoked potential testing between children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo. Children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo performed significantly better on the Sustained Attention Subscale of the Leiter International Performance Scale (46.5 ± 8.9 vs 41.9 ± 9.3, P < .008) but there were no statistically significant differences between groups on other neuropsychological domains. Conclusions: Five-year-old children whose mothers received modest DHA supplementation versus placebo for the first 4 months of breastfeeding performed better on a test of sustained attention. This, along with the previously reported better performance of the children of DHA-supplemented mothers on a test of psychomotor development at 30 months of age, suggests that DHA intake during early infancy confers long-term benefits on specific aspects of neurodevelopment.",
author = "Jensen, {Craig L.} and Voigt, {Robert G.} and Llorente, {Antolin M.} and Peters, {Sarika U.} and Prager, {Thomas C.} and Zou, {Yali L.} and Rozelle, {Judith C.} and Turcich, {Marie R.} and Fraley, {J. Kennard} and Anderson, {Robert E.} and Heird, {William C.}",
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Jensen, CL, Voigt, RG, Llorente, AM, Peters, SU, Prager, TC, Zou, YL, Rozelle, JC, Turcich, MR, Fraley, JK, Anderson, RE & Heird, WC 2010, 'Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants', Journal of Pediatrics, vol. 157, no. 6, pp. 900-905. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2010.06.006

Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants. / Jensen, Craig L.; Voigt, Robert G.; Llorente, Antolin M.; Peters, Sarika U.; Prager, Thomas C.; Zou, Yali L.; Rozelle, Judith C.; Turcich, Marie R.; Fraley, J. Kennard; Anderson, Robert E.; Heird, William C.

In: Journal of Pediatrics, Vol. 157, No. 6, 01.12.2010, p. 900-905.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Effects of early maternal docosahexaenoic acid intake on neuropsychological status and visual acuity at five years of age of breast-fed term infants

AU - Jensen, Craig L.

AU - Voigt, Robert G.

AU - Llorente, Antolin M.

AU - Peters, Sarika U.

AU - Prager, Thomas C.

AU - Zou, Yali L.

AU - Rozelle, Judith C.

AU - Turcich, Marie R.

AU - Fraley, J. Kennard

AU - Anderson, Robert E.

AU - Heird, William C.

PY - 2010/12/1

Y1 - 2010/12/1

N2 - Objective: We previously reported better psychomotor development at 30 months of age in infants whose mothers received a docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3) supplement for the first 4 months of lactation. We now assess neuropsychological and visual function of the same children at 5 years of age. Study design: Breastfeeding women were assigned to receive identical capsules containing either a high-DHA algal oil (∼200 mg/d of DHA) or a vegetable oil (containing no DHA) from delivery until 4 months postpartum. Primary outcome variables at 5 years of age were measures of gross and fine motor function, perceptual/visual-motor function, attention, executive function, verbal skills, and visual function of the recipient children at 5 years of age. Results: There were no differences in visual function as assessed by the Bailey-Lovie acuity chart, transient visual evoked potential or sweep visual evoked potential testing between children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo. Children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo performed significantly better on the Sustained Attention Subscale of the Leiter International Performance Scale (46.5 ± 8.9 vs 41.9 ± 9.3, P < .008) but there were no statistically significant differences between groups on other neuropsychological domains. Conclusions: Five-year-old children whose mothers received modest DHA supplementation versus placebo for the first 4 months of breastfeeding performed better on a test of sustained attention. This, along with the previously reported better performance of the children of DHA-supplemented mothers on a test of psychomotor development at 30 months of age, suggests that DHA intake during early infancy confers long-term benefits on specific aspects of neurodevelopment.

AB - Objective: We previously reported better psychomotor development at 30 months of age in infants whose mothers received a docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3) supplement for the first 4 months of lactation. We now assess neuropsychological and visual function of the same children at 5 years of age. Study design: Breastfeeding women were assigned to receive identical capsules containing either a high-DHA algal oil (∼200 mg/d of DHA) or a vegetable oil (containing no DHA) from delivery until 4 months postpartum. Primary outcome variables at 5 years of age were measures of gross and fine motor function, perceptual/visual-motor function, attention, executive function, verbal skills, and visual function of the recipient children at 5 years of age. Results: There were no differences in visual function as assessed by the Bailey-Lovie acuity chart, transient visual evoked potential or sweep visual evoked potential testing between children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo. Children whose mothers received DHA versus placebo performed significantly better on the Sustained Attention Subscale of the Leiter International Performance Scale (46.5 ± 8.9 vs 41.9 ± 9.3, P < .008) but there were no statistically significant differences between groups on other neuropsychological domains. Conclusions: Five-year-old children whose mothers received modest DHA supplementation versus placebo for the first 4 months of breastfeeding performed better on a test of sustained attention. This, along with the previously reported better performance of the children of DHA-supplemented mothers on a test of psychomotor development at 30 months of age, suggests that DHA intake during early infancy confers long-term benefits on specific aspects of neurodevelopment.

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