Soy isoflavones could reduce infant mortality

A soy isoflavone used in soy infant formula could reduce diarrhea in infants, according to a new study, and thereby save lives in developing countries. Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) found that the soy isoflavone genistin may reduce a baby’s susceptibility to rotavirus infections by as much as 74 percent. The study, published in September’s Journal of Nutrition, exposed cells in culture to rotavirus in both the absence and presence of soy isoflavones. According to the researchers, the results could flag up soy isoflavones as a potential alternative to expensive rotavirus vaccines that are inaccessible to poorer families. As part of the UIUC study, performed by doctoral candidate Aline Andres, different forms of soy isoflavones were tested individually as well as together in the complete mixture that is used in infant formula. «Genistin and the mixture significantly reduced rotavirus infectivity by 33 to 74 percent,» said Donovan. «But when genistin was taken out of the mixture, anti-rotavirus activity was lost, suggesting that it is the active component in reducing infectivity.»
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Source: NutraIngredients