By this point, you may be familiar with Plumpy'Nut®, the miraculous peanut paste in a foil pouch that is being used to treat children with severe acute malnutrition in communities around the world. To recap: the genius of this innovation is that children can be treated at home rather than as inpatients.
But what you may not know is that a variation of Plumpy'Nut®'s sister product, Nutributter® is being tested for improving the odds for pregnant women and their infants. Nutributter® is also a micronutrient-fortified semi-solid paste. It's also known as a lipid-based nutrient supplement (LNS). And the new formulation is called LNS P&L-- we can be sure that they'll come up with a catchier name when the studies are done. LNS P&L is being studied in government hospitals in Ghana (Atua and Akuse, and the St Martins de Porres Catholic Hospital at Agormanya (Manya Krobo District of Ghana), and the Somanya Polyclinic at Somanya (Yilo Krobo District of Ghana).
We found out about this trial from our friends at [ Edesia
] , the factory down the road which pumps out metric tons of Nutributter®, Plumpy'Nut® and Plumpy'Sup® every month.
Here is a snippet from the study design listed on [ clinicaltrials site
> LNS-20gM) will, in addition to the multiple micronutrients provided in the MMN, supply
> energy (118 kcal/d), fat (11 g/d), protein (2.6 g/d), the essential fatty acids linoleic acid
> (=1.29 g/d) >and a-linolenic acid (0.29 to >0.6 g/d), as well as calcium, phosphorus,
> potassium and >magnesium.
The study will assess key metrics in the mothers (BMI, anemia, breast milk composition and interestingly, depressive symptoms). In addition, children will be studied until 18 months of age for their physical growth, motor skills, neurobehavioral skills and development, anemia and more.
Here's a question: What happens if at birth all of the health metrics of mother and infant are dramatically improved? Will the project report interim results? Will the world know? We aim to bring you updates as soon as they are available.