New concepts of microbial translocation in the neonatal intestine: mechanisms and prevention

Clin Perinatol. 2010 Sep;37(3):565-79. doi: 10.1016/j.clp.2010.05.006.


Bacterial translocation from the gastrointestinal tract is an important pathway initiating late-onset sepsis and necrotizing enterocolitis in very low-birth-weight infants. The emerging intestinal microbiota, nascent intestinal epithelia, naive immunity, and suboptimal nutrition (lack of breast milk) have roles in facilitating bacterial translocation. Feeding lactoferrin, probiotics, or prebiotics has presented exciting possibilities to prevent bacterial translocation in preterm infants, and clinical trials will identify the most safe and efficacious prevention and treatment strategies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Translocation*
  • Enterocolitis, Necrotizing / microbiology
  • Enterocolitis, Necrotizing / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Intestinal Mucosa / microbiology*
  • Intestines / microbiology*
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use*