News Release 

Coronavirus treatment and risk to breastfeeding women

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News

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Credit: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers

New Rochelle, NY, March 4, 2020--Little data is available about the ability of antiviral drugs used to treat COVID-19, coronavirus, to enter breastmilk, let alone the potential adverse effects on breastfeeding infants. A new perspective article reviewing what is known about the most commonly used drugs to treat coronavirus and influenza is published in Breastfeeding Medicine, the official journal of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers. Click here to read the protocol free on the Breastfeeding Medicine website.

Philip Anderson, PharmD, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of California, San Diego, is the author of "Breastfeeding and Respiratory Antivirals: Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Influenza." The short answer to questions regarding drug therapy for COVID-19 is that currently there is no antiviral agent proven to be effective against this new infection. However, one investigational drug so far, remdesivir, appears promising to treat COVID-19, and it is in phase 3 clinical trials in patients. Dr. Anderson notes: "Nothing is known about the passage of remdesivir into breastmilk."

Arthur I. Eidelman, MD, Editor-in-Chief of Breastfeeding Medicine, states: "Given the reality that mothers infected with coronavirus have probably already colonized their nursing infant, continued breastfeeding has the potential of transmitting protective maternal antibodies to the infant via the breast milk. Thus, breastfeeding should be continued with the mother carefully practicing handwashing and wearing a mask while nursing, to minimize additional viral exposure to the infant."

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About the Journal

Breastfeeding Medicine, the official journal of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, is an authoritative, peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary journal published 10 times per year in print and online. The Journal publishes original scientific papers, reviews, and case studies on a broad spectrum of topics in lactation medicine. It presents evidence-based research advances and explores the immediate and long-term outcomes of breastfeeding, including the epidemiologic, physiologic, and psychological benefits of breastfeeding. Tables of content and a sample issue may be viewed on the Breastfeeding Medicine website.

About the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine

The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine (ABM) is a worldwide organization of medical doctors dedicated to the promotion, protection, and support of breastfeeding. Our mission is to unite members of the various medical specialties with this common purpose. For more than 20 years, ABM has been bringing doctors together to provide evidence-based solutions to the challenges facing breastfeeding across the globe. A vast body of research has demonstrated significant nutritional, physiological, and psychological benefits for both mothers and children that last well beyond infancy. But while breastfeeding is the foundation of a lifetime of health and well-being, clinical practice lags behind scientific evidence. By building on our legacy of research into this field and sharing it with the broader medical community, we can overcome barriers, influence health policies, and change behaviors.

About the Publisher

Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers is a privately held, fully integrated media company known for establishing authoritative peer-reviewed journals in many promising areas of science and biomedical research, including Journal of Women's Health, Childhood Obesity, and Pediatric Allergy, Immunology, and Pulmonology. Its biotechnology trade magazine, GEN (Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News) was the first in its field and is today the industry's most widely read publication worldwide. A complete list of the firm's 90 journals, books, and newsmagazines is available on the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publisher's website.

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