The New Zealand-based Otago University has initiated a study to find out if health claims made about A2 milk by its manufacturer A2 Corporation can be supported, reports the New Zealand Herald.
A2 Corporation claims that milk containing a certain type of protein, A1, can trigger heart disease, autism and some types of diabetes. Its A2 milk contains only the A2 variety of beta casein protein.
The product was launched on the home market and in Australia in April last year and has also seen some interest in the UK.
However research showing the link between A1 milk and heart disease has caused much debate in New Zealand, leading to a court battle with major dairy group Fonterra, which it claims suppressed research linking milk containing the A1 protein to autism, schizophrenia, diabetes and heart disease.
Half the people in the new study will consume A1 milk and cheese for four weeks and half A2 before switching milk type for another four weeks. They will have their cholesterol measured at the start, after four weeks and again at the end.