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Keywords:

  • cow's milk allergy;
  • ass's milk;
  • goat's milk;
  • atopic dermatitis

Cow milk allergy is a common disease of infancy, often associated with atopic dermatitis (AD). Avoidance of cow milk (CM) implies the use of alternative dietary supports such as mammalian milks. In this study, we assessed the tolerability and clinical effect of ass's milk (AM), when compared with the largely used goat's milk (GM) in a single-blind, controlled, randomized crossover. Twenty-eight children with AD and ascertained allergy to CM were enrolled. The children were randomized to AM or GM for 6 months, then switched to the other milk for further 3 months. The SCORAD index (SI) and a visual analog scale (VAS) were evaluated blindly. After termination of the study, food challenges with GM and AM were performed. An SDS-PAGE analysis of different milks was performed. Two children from the GM group dropped out after randomization and 26 completed the study. Ass milk invariantly led to a significant improvement of SI and VAS of symptoms (p < 0.03 vs. baseline and inter-group), whereas GM had no measurable clinical effect. At the end of the study 23 of 26 children had a positive food challenge with GM and one of 26 with AM. Ass's milk had a protein profile closer to human milk than GM. Ass milk is better tolerated and more effective than GM in reducing symptoms of AD. It may represent a better substitute of CM than the currently used GM.