Lactation Study Project
The Lactation Study is an ongoing human study recruiting mothers in their third trimester and following them and their infants from before birth through the first year of life. The mothers are provided with breastfeeding support and donate milk samples for the entire year so that researchers can investigate the composition of breastmilk, how it changes over the course of lactation, and what dietary, lifestyle, and environmental factors affect composition and function in the infant. The broader goal of the Lactation Study Project is to build a comprehensive sample bank of breastmilk samples along with infant saliva, urine, and fecal samples that serve as a resource to the FFHI community for investigating important questions about lactation and infant health. One of the aims is to characterize the mechanistic relationships between complex structures of human milk and their functions on infant gut microbiota. The long-term goal is to implement dietary strategies that target the metabolism of biological components in human milk to promote infant health.