Children's Health

Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA), Arachidonic Acid (AA) and Nucleotides DHA and AA are two long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids founds naturally in human milk. Prevalence of DHA and AA in the cerebral cortex has long been established, DHA is widely distribute at high concentration in the central nervous system and thus plays some critical role throughout the central nervous system. DHA intake and status have a significant impact on visual and cognitive development in breastfeed infants. From per capita quantities of food available for the consumption in United State national food supply in 1985, the amount of DHA is 80 mg per capita per day.

DHA accumulates in human brain tissue at a rapid rate (~14.5mg/week) during the gestational weeks 26-40. DHA and AA accumulate rapidly in the developing brain during the last trimester of gestation. For the third trimester of pregnancy until 18 month after birth, the brain growth spurt correlates with DHA content in brain phospholipids. Deficits in brain DHA accrual during the third trimester may contribute to deficits in attention in preterm children.
Furthermore, rodents fed DHA-rich oil exhibit superior learning ability in brightness-discrimination learning test compared with a high-linoleic safflower oil group. So rodents studies have helped identify the behavioral domains that might be sensitive to the quality and quantity of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid accumulation in brain. Despite, several studies illustrate hyperactive disorder children suffer from essential fatty acid deficiency and mainly the n-3 subgroup of fatty acid. The problem is further worsened when omega-6 fats are consumed progresses to the typical standard 15:1 and even worse to 50:1. Particularly, DHA is important during the prenatal human brain development because DHA concentration is vulnerable to limitations in the supply of precursor. So DHA in the diets infants must be adequate or there is risk of suboptimal development.
Nucleotides are ubiquitous of crucial importance to cellular function and it participates in many biochemical processes that are essential to cellular metabolism. Nucleotides account for 2-5% of the non-protien nitrogen fraction of human milk. The body's requirements for exogenous nucleotides may increase when the body is growing rapidly such as in early infancy. In infants who were born small for gestitonal age improved growth in terms of weight, length and head circumference was found after nucleotide supplementation. Thus, nucleotides have an important role in the development of immune function.
Nucleotides appear to facilitate phagocytosis and increase natural killer cells activity. Supplementations of formulas with nucleotides resulted in a modest improvement in antibody response. A double – blind study among socioeconomically deprive infants in Chile compared diarrheal episodes in infants fed a nucleotides-supplemented formula experienced significantly fewer episode of diarrhea, suggesting nucleotides may provide protection against the infection.
 



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