Probiotics in late infancy reduce the incidence of eczema: A randomized controlled trial

Rikke Meineche Schmidt*, Rikke Pilmann Laursen, Signe Bruun, Anni Larnkjær, Christian Mølgaard, Kim F. Michaelsen, Arne Høst

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

28 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Allergic diseases are common and represent a considerable health and economic burden worldwide. We aimed to examine the effect of a combination of two probiotic strains administered in late infancy and early childhood on the development of allergic diseases and sensitization. Methods: In this double-blind, placebo-controlled intervention trial, participants were randomized to receive a daily mixture of Lactobacillus rhamnosus and Bifidobacterium animalis subsp lactis or placebo—starting prior to attending day care. The intervention period was 6 months, and the parents answered web-based questionnaires on allergic symptoms and doctor's diagnosed allergic disease monthly. IgE was measured at baseline and follow-up. Results: A total of 290 participants were randomized: 144 in the probiotic group and 146 in the placebo group. Mean age at intervention start was 10.1 months. At follow-up (mean age 16.1 months), the incidence of eczema was 4.2% in the probiotic group and 11.5% in the placebo group (P = 0.036). The incidence of asthma and conjunctivitis did not differ between groups, and no children presented with rhinitis. Sensitization was equal in the two groups at intervention start (7.5% and 9.5%, respectively), and two children in each group were sensitized during the intervention. Conclusions: We observed a significantly lower incidence of eczema in the probiotic group compared to the placebo group. The probiotics were administered in late infancy—prior to attending day care—suggesting a broader window of opportunity using probiotics in the prevention of eczema. The incidence of asthma, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and sensitization did not differ.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPediatric Allergy and Immunology
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)335-340
Publication statusPublished - 1. May 2019


  • allergic diseases
  • allergy
  • atopy
  • Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis
  • Lactobacillus rhamnosus
  • RCT
  • sensitization


Dive into the research topics of 'Probiotics in late infancy reduce the incidence of eczema: A randomized controlled trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this