What Are the Benefits of Lactoferrin?


Learn what lactoferrin is, what benefits it can offer and which products are being launched around the world.

What is lactoferrin?

Lactoferrin is a naturally occurring globular glycoprotein found in whey protein. It’s widely known as a nutritional supplement in many parts of the world, as evidence has shown lactoferrin reduces the risk of infections and vulnerability to diseases and improves overall health and recovery.1

What are the benefits of lactoferrin?

Immune health

Lactoferrin has been shown to support the immune response and to have immune-modulatory effects3-7, meaning it contributes to an antiviral response, and it may support resilience, thus better coping with immune stressors, and a beneficial immune status.

Research shows that lactoferrin can provide multiple beneficial effects for immune health:

Antiviral effects

It reduces the risk of viral2,8,9 infections by affecting the entry of a virus into host cells , or by enhancing the response of certain immune cells.3

Antibacterial effects

Lactoferrin’s iron-binding capacity inhibits the growth of several pathogenic bacteria.10 It sequesters iron necessary for bacterial survival, and disrupts the proliferation of these bacteria.11,12 This can reduce the risk of bacterial infection.

Supports iron absorption

As an iron-binding protein, lactoferrin supports iron absorption, relevant to those at risk for anemia, such as female athletes.13

Ongoing research

Trials are running globally to investigate the effect of lactoferrin on COVID-19 as cell-based experiments have demonstrated that lactoferrin can help protect against coronavirus infections like SARS-COV-2.14

More benefits of lactoferrin

Oral care: Tablets with bovine lactoferrin contribute to reducing malodor and improving the oral hygiene
status in adults.15-19

Weight loss: Lactoferrin has been shown to help promote the reduction of visceral fat in obese adults.20

Skincare: Studies have shown that lactoferrin may help improve skin condition in healthy adults.21

benefits of lactoferrin

Global research on growth of new products with lactoferrin from 2018 – 2020

Growth in new products with lactoferrin has been steady around the world, with the greatest increase of new products seen in Europe and Australia and New Zealand.22

Growth in lactoferrin launches

What is lactoferrin used for?

Lactoferrin innovations are most commonly available as a supplement. In North America, capsules and powders account for the most new product launches, and in Europe, capsules and RTDs are popular. In Asia, powders and tablets are most common.

Lactoferrin products types

Get Inspired : Biotis™ Immune Plus Powder Drink

The Immune-Plus Powder Drink is a new application suggestion based on Biotis™ Lactoferrin that fits easily into the diet and lifestyles of consumers.

Application suggestion with lactoferrin


With six out of ten consumers increasingly looking for food and drink products that support immune health23, a powder drink is an ideal option.

Interested in learning more? Check out our solutions for natural immune support and learn how you can create a unique application for your brand.

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1. Legrand et al., 2016
2. Mizuki et al., 2020
3. Splunter van et al., 2018
4. Kawakami et al., 2015
5. Mulder et al., 2008
6. Dix & Wright. 2018
7. Zimecki et al., 1999
8. Oda et al., 2020
9. Vitetta et al., 2013
10. Kell et al., 2020
11. Saito et al., 1996
12. Wang et al., 2019
13. Koikawa et al., 2008
14. Mirabelli et al., 2020
15. Shin et al., 2011
16. Nakano et al., 2016
17. Morita et al., 2017
18. Nakano et al., 2017
19. Nakano et al., 2019
20. Ono et al., 2010
21. Oda et al., 2019
22. Innova, 2020
23. FMCG Gurus, 2021

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