Nutrition and the infant gut microbiota (NEW!)

The infant microbiota colonization process runs in parallel with immune system maturation, affecting intestinal physiology and regulation. Accumulating evidence suggests that microbial exposition begins before birth (in utero) and continues after birth. It is shaped by mode of delivery, and breastfeeding practices are the most important factors. The maternal microbiota is the main source of microorganisms for the infant gut, and breast milk constitutes the most important source of post-natal microbes. From birth onwards, infant microbial diversity increases and converges towards an adult-like microbiota at 3–5 years of life. Imbalances in this microbial colonization are considered strong risk factors for the development of non-communicable diseases. According to available data, an adequate nutritional and microbial environment in early life is key in microbiological, immunological and metabolic programming of infant health.

How does the brain really work? (NEW!)

Over the last decades, epidemiological and interventional studies have shown that nutrition and some specific nutrients impact brain and cognitive development and brain health, functionally and structurally. Moreover, managing nutritional habit through specific diet has a positive impact on health. Some specific nutrients, such as the polyunsaturated omega-3 fatty acid docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) have also been shown to promote brain development and support cognitive function during aging. However, our understanding of how nutrition affects brain function remains very limited.

Predicting the future - new concepts in brain flexibility (NEW!)

Executive function in pre-school aged children has been shown to be a strong predictor of future academic achievement. Therefore, the ability to characterize the maturation/developmental processes of executive function during early brain development could be of paramount importance in cultivating strategies to enhance executive function. Although the major components of executive function emerge around 3 years of age, the attention system develops earlier and has been strongly advocated as a prerequisite for proper development of executive function. It is, therefore, not surprising that associations between the maturation of the attention system in early infancy and subsequent performance in executive function have been widely reported.

Everyone's talking about human milk oligosaccharides (NEW!)

The early-life gut microbiome is important for the development of immune competence in newborn infants. Mode of delivery, perinatal antibiotic use and diet are most influential to this end. Breastfeeding is associated with lower risk of gastrointestinal and respiratory infections, and possibly lower risk of diabetes and obesity, while the effect on allergies is not so clear. This suggests that breast milk-specific components may contribute. Among them are the non-digestible human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs), the third largest solid breast milk component that varies primarily due to the maternal genotype for the Secretor and Lewis genes and stage of lactation. Other milk oligosaccharides are also relevant here.

Harnessing neuroplasticity through brain exercises to improve learning ability and academic achievement in young children (NEW!)

The structure and function of the human brain are fundamentally shaped after birth by stimulation from the environment. The greater extent of this post-natal neuroplasticity distinguishes humans from all other animals. Computer technology and internet-based delivery make it possible to harness this neuroplasticity and promote development in young children of cognitive skills essential for learning and function in the 21st century. Data from thousands of school children demonstrate effectiveness and ability to scale at population levels at low cost.

Early Nutrition And The Impact On Long-Term Outcomes

Mechanisms that early nutrition impacts later health including metabolic programing, brain development, gut microbiota, and healthy eating habits.

CDC training models-Celebrating Milestones and Sharing Concerns

CDC training models to early care providers on how to monitor children’s development and communicate with their parents. CME credit available.

Iron Intake And Human Milk Fat Globule Membranes In Neuro Development

Reviewed the role of iron supplementation, delayed cord clamping, and key proteins of the human milk fat globular membrane in early neuro development.

The PedsQL™ Scoring Algorithm. Scoring The Pediatric Quality Of Life Inventory™

Learning module on the PedsQL™ Generic Core Scales including Physical Functioning, Emotional Functioning, Social Functioning, and School Functioning.

Prebiotics And Gut Health: Friends In Low Places

Discussing the influence of the microbiome on digestive and other illnesses and prebiotics’ role in overall health of infants, children, and adults.

Hot Topics - Maintaining A Healthy Microbiome - Keys To Having Gut Bacteria Play Well Together In The Sandbox

Describing the gut as a functional ecosystem and discussing pre- and probiotics, and their current health aspect drivers and emerging health benefits.

Lipid Metabolism In Neonates And Infants

Reviewed the correlation of specific fatty acid intakes and developmental outcomes focusing DHA and sn2 palmitate and their role in developing infant.

Promoting Cognitive Development Through Advancing Nutrition

Providing specific quantified health burden estimates of diverse infant feeding practices that can help inform related public health policy.

The Role of Oligosaccharides on the Immune System and Long-term Outcomes

The viewer should have an augmented understanding of the importance of oligosaccharides in human health.

Behaviour Impact, Result of the FITS and MING Study in USA and China

Important weaning practices and insights from dietary data to develop healthy eating habits early in life: case studies from FITS 2008 and Ming 2012.

The Role of Palmitic Acid in Infant Nutrition

The high sn2 palmitic acid has been shown to improve calcium absorption and other health outcomes when added to infant formula.

Pediatric Gastroenteritis in Emergency Medicine

Practice essentials on Paediatric Gastroenteritis in Emergency Medicine includes overview, clinical presentation, diagnosis and management.


Discussed and addressed questions on supplementations of DHA and sn2 palmitic acid to infant formula.
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Academic Activities

3rd Pediatric Endocrinology Update: “Healthly Hormonal Lifespan: From Fetus to Adolescent”

Associate Professor Craig Munns
Margaret Zacharin

Material Thyroid Dysfunction: The Effects on Their Babies
Maternal Metabolic Imbalance: Its Impact on fetal growth Early Nutrition and Metabolic
Outcome Congenital Hypothyroid Newborn Screening: What To Do with Abnormal Result?


Specific Breast Milk Nutrients May Work Together To Influence Cognitive Abilities Of 6-Month-Old Infants

Reviewed the cohort study abstract that specific breast milk nutrients may work together to influence cognitive development and possible mechanisms.

Synergistic Effects Of Human Milk Nutrients In The Support Of Infant Recognition Memory: An Observational Study

Studied relation of human milk lutein, choline and DHA with recognition memory. Nutrients Interactions appear important to predict infant cognition.


CDC Developmental Milestones

Developmental milestones of when and how children grasp skills of crawling, walking, smiling, learning, speaking and etc.

Neurodevelopmental MRI Database

Offers average MRIs and associated MRI volumes as references for neurodevelopmental work for 2 weeks of age through 89 years of age.