Welcome to ISRHML

The International Society for Research in Human Milk and Lactation (ISRHML) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion of excellence in research and the dissemination of research findings in the field of human milk and lactation. Learn More.


Register for the next ISRHML European Webinar - November 3rd

Human milk lipids - what do we know? with Dr. Johann Demmelmair
18:00 CET on Tues, Nov 17th

Fat occurs in human milk as milk fat globules and provides about 50% of human milk energy. Although more than 200 fatty acids have been identified in human milk, there are only a limited number of fatty acids with quantitative relevance, but these form a huge number of different lipids. Non polar triglycerides, which contribute more than 98% -wt/wt to the fat, form the core of the milk fat globules. Specific for milk fat is a relatively high content of short and medium chain fatty acids with up to 14 carbon atoms and a strong enrichment of palmitic acid at the sn-2 position. Both factors enhance fat digestibility. Of importance is the content of the essential fatty acids and their long chain polyunsaturated derivatives. They are mainly provided by triglycerides, although their relative percentage may be higher in certain more polar milk lipid fractions. The polar lipids in milk include glycerophospholipids, sphingolipids, and cholesterol. Quantitatively they are all minor components, but their importance for the development of the infant digestive tract, immune system and cognition has started to be recognized in recent years.


The 6th ISRHML European Webinar has been rescheduled to the 17th of November

Mother’s own milk vs. donor milk for preterm infants Type with Prof. Dr. Hans van Goudoever 
18:00 CET on Tues, Nov 17th

When mother’s own milk is not available, donor human milk is a good alternative. However, processing the milk, including the multiple freeze and thaw processes and pasteurization does affect the quality of milk. Many differences in processing exists between milk banks, across countries, also in processes that clearly affect the quality. This presentation will give an update on the latest evidence on the efficacy of donor milk, compared to own mother’s milk, including the newest data on SARS-CoV-2 and human donor milk.


Mary Frances Picciano Gradulate Scholarship

The Division of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Illinois is proud to announce the recent creation and endowment of the Mary Frances Picciano Graduate Scholarship. This scholarship was created by a former student to show appreciation for the impact Mary Frances made on shaping her professional career path.  Mary Frances was one of the ISRHML founders and a former President of the society.  Many ISRHML members were her dear friends, colleagues and former trainees.   She was a faculty member at the University of Illinois and Penn State University and finished her career in the Office of Dietary Supplements at NIH.  She passed away in 2001 after a long battle with lung cancer. A tribute was published in AJCN:  View

Currently in the Division of Nutritional Sciences approximately 64% of enrolled students are female, this graduate scholarship will provide valuable financial assistance to a future female scientist. Furthermore, the Division of Nutritional Science is thrilled to announce an opportunity for those impacted by Mary Frances to show their appreciation. A donor that has chosen to remain anonymous will directly match any gift made to this scholarship up to a total of $25,000. This is an opportunity to make a huge impact in the Division of Nutritional Sciences and to ensure future generations of strong female scientists know the impact Mary Frances had on this landscape.

For more information or to make a gift please contact Matt Smith at 217-300-6113 or msmi@illinois.edu or to make a secure gift online visit https://uif.uillinois.edu/give/ and in the “other” row at the bottom of the page enter Mary Frances Picciano Scholarship Fund – 11776398

ISRHML 2021 Conference

The 20th International Congress of ISRHML will be held on 16 – 20 August 2021 at the same venue; Aula Medica, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. 

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