2011 Volume 30 Issue 4 Pages 129-133
Environmental factors during early infancy could theoretically affect immune system development and subsequent risk of allergic disease. One potentially helpful exposure is early infant supplementation with specific probiotic strains. Unlike other exposures, probiotic supplementation is feasible and has a good safety profile. A review of recent randomized, controlled trials suggests that the effect of supplementation with probiotics on preventing the development of allergic disease is mixed. Further studies are needed to define potential mechanisms of action, such as effects on infant microbiota, as well as potential subgroups of patients that may benefit from these interventions.