Lactoferrin for the treatment of age-associated inflammation – A pilot study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Chronic inflammation (CI) is a common trait of aging associated with adverse outcomes including mortality. We hypothesized that recombinant human Lactoferrin (rhLf) would reduce chronic inflammation of aging. Methods: Thirty-six community dwelling older adults were randomly assigned to rhLf or placebo treatment in 1:1 ratio for 3 months. IL-6, sTNFR1, Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP), and Complete Blood Count (CBC) were measured at baseline, 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months. Physical and cognitive measures were completed at same timepoints, including 4-m walking speed (m/s), grip strength (kg), 6-min walking distance (m), home activity measured by accelerometer, trail making test – Part A (s) and – Part B (s), and Digit symbol substitution test (number correctly coded). Primary outcomes were differences in IL-6 and sTNFR1 concentrations evaluated by generalized linear model with log-link and gamma family distribution, controlling for baseline cytokine concentrations. Results: rhLF was well-tolerated. There were a significant number of abdominal complaints and increased drop-out rate in placebo group. Participants in rhLf arm had non-significant lower mean percent increase in IL6 at 3 months (rhLf mean IL-6 6% lower than control, P 5 0.843), and sTNFaR1 (rhLf mean 2% lower than control, P 5 0.36). No significant changes were observed for the cognitive or physical measures. Conclusion: Treatment with rhLf did not significantly alter serum IL6 or sTNFR1 concentrations of older adults. This study may have been underpowered to detect difference, but provided evidence that a larger sample-size could more definitively determine the effect of rhLF on age-associated CI.

Original languagePersian (Iran, Islamic Republic of)
Pages (from-to)121-136
Number of pages16
JournalPhysiology International
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2021


  • Chronic inflammation
  • IL-6
  • Lactoferrin
  • STNFR1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)

Cite this