Children with cystic fibrosis (CF) have a poor nutritional condition, which is linked to mortality and morbidity. Intestinal inflammation may lead to poor digestion, absorption, and nutrient utilization in CF patients, and oral glutathione may decrease inflammation, encouraging better nutritional status in CF patients. The GROW project was a multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, phase II clinical trial in pancreatic insufficiency CF patients aged 2 to 10 years. For 24 weeks, patients were given either reduced glutathione or a placebo orally. The primary outcome was the difference in weight-for-age z-score changes between treatment groups from baseline to week 24. Other anthropometrics, serum and fecal inflammatory indicators, as well as clinical outcomes, were included as secondary goals. The study was completed by 58 individuals. There were no significant changes in the 6-month change in weight-for-age z-score, absolute change in weight, or absolute change in BMI kg/m2 between the glutathione and placebo groups. Other secondary endpoints revealed no significant differences. Overall, glutathione was deemed to be safe and well tolerated.
When compared to placebo, oral glutathione supplementation had no effect on growth or serum or fecal inflammatory markers in pancreatic inadequate children with CF.