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Prolacta's human milk-based nutrition has touched the lives of 100,000 Premature and Critically Ill Infants Globally

Milestone Celebrated During Prematurity Awareness Month

DUARTE, Calif., Nov. 17, 2023 -- Prolacta Bioscience, the world's leading hospital provider of 100% human milk-based nutritional products for critically ill, premature infants, proudly commemorates Prematurity Awareness Month 2023 by announcing a significant milestone: more than 100,000 preterm and critically ill infants' lives have been touched by Prolacta's Exclusive Human Milk Diet (EHMD) in hospitals worldwide.1

"Prematurity Awareness Month is an important time to raise awareness about the challenges and triumphs faced by premature and critically ill infants, as well as their families," said Melinda Elliott, MD, chief medical officer of Prolacta and a practicing neonatologist. "We're proud that for more than two decades, Prolacta's 100% human milk-based nutritional products have supported hospitals on the forefront of progressive care to help so many fragile infants in need."

One of the 100,000 Lives Touched by Prolacta's Human Milk-Based Nutrition
Back in 2013, Delvin and Brandi Peeks from Virginia experienced an emotional NICU journey after the birth of their daughter, Leah Michelle, who was born at 23 weeks weighing just 1 lb 8 oz.

Leah Michelle experienced intolerance to the cow milk-based fortifier she initially received and subsequently developed necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), the most common and serious intestinal disease among premature infants and one of the leading causes of preterm mortality.

The Peeks advocated for Leah Michelle to be on an EHMD and asked the hospital to fortify Brandi's breast milk with a Prolacta fortifier. Today, Leah Michelle is a thriving 9-year-old who is considered everyone's best friend at school and enjoys playing the clarinet, acting, and singing. She's also on a competitive swim team and won her first race this past summer.

Elevating Neonatal Nutrition: Clinical Benefits & Cost Savings
Available since 2006, Prolacta's human milk-based fortifiers have transformed the standard of care in hospitals worldwide by offering a proven alternative to cow milk-based fortifiers.2,3,4

All types of hospitals have seen the benefits of an EHMD to treat the critically ill, premature infants in their care, including those supporting underserved populations. Recognizing that the preterm birth rate is highest among people of color and that prematurity is the leading cause of death among Black infants,5 hospitals are working to bridge healthcare disparities by making Prolacta's EHMD more accessible to disadvantaged families.

One example is Los Angeles General Medical Center (formerly LAC+USC Medical Center), among the largest public hospitals in the U.S. This safety-net hospital implemented Prolacta's EHMD and witnessed less NEC, less bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), less cases of severe retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), and shorter lengths of stay among its premature infants while achieving net savings of $2.7 million over a two-year period.6

"We have shown substantial reductions in mortality and long-term morbidity that benefits infants especially at high risk, including those born to mothers of substantial social risk, lower socioeconomic status, and lack of access to prenatal care," said Dr. Rangasamy Ramanathan, professor of pediatrics and division chief of the Division of Neonatal Medicine at Los Angeles General Medical Center.

The clinical benefits and cost savings of an EHMD are reinforced by a recent peer-reviewed report that showed Prolacta's human milk-based fortifiers reduced comorbidities among preterm infants while saving hospitals up to $3.4 million annually.7

About Prolacta's Human Milk-Based Nutritional Products
The naturally occurring bioactive components in human milk are thought to support infants' immunity, development, growth, and long-term health.8 Prolacta's products have the highest bioactivity in the human milk industry9 and are clinically proven to significantly boost human milk bioactive proteins and antioxidant activity.10 The company's proprietary processing ensures pathogen inactivation and the highest level of safety while retaining as much of the natural bioactivity of the milk as possible, compared to other human milk processing methods.9,11,12

"We are incredibly proud that Prolacta's Exclusive Human Milk Diet has directly touched the lives of 100,000 infants throughout the world. This milestone is a testament to the devotion and hard work of the entire Prolacta team, who are dedicated to proving that 100% human milk-based nutrition can make a real difference in the health of premature and critically ill infants," said Scott Elster, CEO of Prolacta.

To learn more, visit

About Prolacta Bioscience
Prolacta Bioscience® Inc. is a privately held, global life sciences company dedicated to Advancing the Science of Human Milk® to improve the health of critically ill, premature infants. Prolacta's 100% human milk-based nutritional products have been evaluated in more than 20 clinical studies published in peer-reviewed journals. To date, more than 100,000 premature infants have benefited from Prolacta's nutritional products worldwide.1 Established in 1999, Prolacta is the world's leading provider of human milk-based nutritional products for hospital use and is also exploring the therapeutic potential of human milk across a wide spectrum of diseases. Prolacta maintains the industry's strictest quality and safety standards for screening, testing, and processing donor human milk. Operating the world's first pharmaceutical-grade human milk processing facilities, Prolacta uses vat pasteurization and a patented, FDA-reviewed manufacturing process to ensure pathogen inactivation while protecting the nutritional composition and bioactivity of its human milk-based products. Prolacta is a global company with headquarters in Duarte, California, and can be found online at, on X, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn

Media Contact:
Loren Kosmont


  1. Data on file; estimated number of infants fed Prolacta's products from January 2007 to August 2023.
  2. Abrams SA, Schanler RJ, Lee ML, Rechtman DJ. Greater mortality and morbidity in extremely preterm infants fed a diet containing cow milk protein products. Breastfeed Med. 2014;9(6):281-285. doi:10.1089/bfm.2014.0024
  3. Cristofalo EA, et al. Randomized trial of exclusive human milk versus preterm formula diets in extremely premature infants. J Pediatr. 2013;163(6):1592-1595. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2013.07.011.
  4. Sullivan S, Schanler RJ, Kim JH, et al. An exclusively human milk-based diet is associated with a lower rate of necrotizing enterocolitis than a diet of human milk and bovine milk-based products. J Pediatr. 2010;156(4):562-567.e1. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2009.10.040
  5. March of Dimes. 2022 March of Dimes Report Card. Updated 2022. Accessed 17 Oct 2023.
  6. Ramanathan R. Clinical and Financial Benefits of Implementing an Exclusive Human Milk Diet (EHMD) - a County Hospital Experience. Prolacta Bioscience. February 7, 2023. Accessed October 6, 2023.
  7. Swanson JR, Becker A, Fox J, et al. Implementing an exclusive human milk diet for preterm infants: real-world experience in diverse NICUs. BMC Pediatr. 2023;23(1). doi:10.1186/s12887-023-04047-5 
  8. Gila-Diaz A, Arribas SM, Algara A, Martín-Cabrejas MA, López de Pablo ÁL, Sáenz de Pipaón M, Ramiro-Cortijo D. A review of bioactive factors in human breastmilk: a focus on prematurity. Nutrients. 2019;11(6):1307. doi:10.3390/nu11061307
  9. Liang N, Koh J, Kim BJ, Ozturk G, Barile D, Dallas DC. Structural and functional changes of bioactive proteins in donor human milk treated by vat-pasteurization, retort sterilization, ultra-high-temperature sterilization, freeze-thawing and homogenization. Front Nutr. 2022;9.
  10. Philip RK, Romeih E, Bailie E, et al. Exclusive human milk diet for extremely premature infants: a novel fortification strategy that enhances the bioactive properties of fresh, frozen, and pasteurized milk specimens. Breastfeed Med. April 2023;18(4):279-290.
  11. Meredith-Dennis L, Xu G, Goonatilleke E, Lebrilla CB, Underwood MA, Smilowitz JT. Composition and variation of macronutrients, immune proteins, and human milk oligosaccharides in human milk from nonprofit and commercial milk banks. J Hum Lact. 2018;34(1):120-129. doi:10.1177/0890334417710635
  12. Lima HK, Wagner-Gillespie M, Perrin MT, Fogleman AD. Bacteria and bioactivity in Holder pasteurized and shelf-stable human milk products. Curr Dev Nutr. 2017;1(8):e001438. doi:10.3945/cdn.117.001438