A vast amount of research has reported that breast-feeding plays an important role for the development of a newborn. Non-breast fed premature infants have higher risk of developing infantile diarrhea and necrotizing enterocolitis.
In a recent study, the content of brain cell growth factors and cytokines in human breast milk was analyzed. Growth factors and cytokines were found in all breast milk samples at varying concentrations.
According to the study, as linked by Green Med Info:
"It could be demonstrated that protein extracts of breast milk increased the amount of surviving enteric neurones as well as neurite outgrowth. Additionally it was shown, that the number of nestin and S100-expressing glial cells increased significantly after incubating in breast milk protein extracts. The data suggest that milk-born proteins support the development of the enteric nervous system."
For more information about the benefits of breast milk and breastfeeding, you can click on the Green Med Info links below.