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Pediatric Newborn Medicine Research Awards

Mandy Brown Belfort, MD, MPH

Funding Source: President and Fellows of Harvard
Project Title: Mandy Belfort Billing Agreement – Maternal and Child Health Training Plan

Funding Source: Gerber Foundation
Project Title: Zinc nutritional status in preterm infants: exosomes as a novel, non-invasive biomarker and associations with growth, brain development, and injury

Funding Source: The Allen Foundation
Project Title: Human milk oligosaccharides to promote optimal growth and brain development for preterm infants
Project Narrative: The goal of this project is to measure human milk oligosaccharide profiles in human milk and examine associations with preterm infant growth and brain development

Funding Source: National Institute of Health
Project Title: Targeting human milk fortification to improve preterm infant growth and brain development
Project Narrative: This grant supports research staff effort for a prospective observational study of variation in human milk composition and preterm infant growth, body composition, and brain development

Katherine Bell, MD

Funding Source: American Academy of Pediatrics
Project Title: Body Composition in Preterm Infants
Project Narrative: The goal of this observational study is to evaluate associations between body composition (lean and fat mass, body fat percentage) and brain size as determined by brain magnetic resonance imaging in preterm infants (<32 weeks) as they reach term equivalent age.

Funding Source: Gerber Foundation
Project Title: Body Composition analysis: A useful tool for assessing nutritional status in premature
Project Narrative: This grant provides direct funds for a prospective observational study of the association between macronutrient (protein, fat, total calories) intake during the NICU hospitalization in preterm infants (<33 weeks), body composition, and brain growth as assessed by brain magnetic resonance imaging.

Sule Cataltepe, MD

Funding Source: National Institute of Health
Project Title: Autophagic Flux and Lysosomal Cathepsins in Neonatal Hyperoxia-Induced Lung Injury

Mohamed El-Dib, MD

Funding Source: Covidien LP
Project Title: CTA: The effect of carbon dioxide tension on the cerebral oxygen saturation in neonates receiving therapeutic hypothermia for neonatal encephalopathy

Funding Source: Risk Management Foundation of the Harvard Affiliated Institutions, Inc.
Project Title: Optimization and Standardization of Care during Therapeutic Hypothermia in the Term Born Infant with Encephalopathy
Project Narrative: We propose a comprehensive plan aiming at performing high yield quality improvement/patient safety projects focused on timing, eligibility and management of therapeutic hypothermia for neonatal encephalopathy. This proposal also includes continuing data collection, monitoring, and analysis for patients enrolled in the Regional Neonatal Encephalopathy Registry.

Katherine Gregory, PhD, RN

Funding Source: Astarte Medical Partners, Inc.
Project Title: Intestinal Microbiome and Inflammation during Infancy and Early Childhood
Project Narrative:

Funding Source: National Institute of Health
Project Title: The influence of the milk microbiome on inflammation of the preterm infant
Project Narrative: Examine the relationships between the preterm milk microbiome and intestinal and systemic inflammation of the preterm infant

Terrie Inder, MBChB, MD

Funding Source: Risk Management Foundation of the Harvard Medical Institutions
Project Title: Implementation of Optimal Neuroprotection in the Term Born Infant with Encephalopathy
Project Narrative: The treatment of infants with mild HIE is currently an area of confusion and contention in neonatology. This study will perform early cerebral MRIs on a cohort of infants that were evaluated for hypothermia, but determined not to require treatment, and on a small cohort of healthy infants for control data. The cerebral MRI findings between these infants will be compared to those that were screened for TH and treated in-order to evaluate the sensitivity of current eligibility criteria for therapeutic hypothermia.

Funding Source: Deborah Monroe Noonan Memorial
Project Title: Optimizing therapeutic hypothermia eligibility criteria
Project Narrative: This study aims to compare cerebral MRI findings between three groups – infants who were screened for TH and treated, those who were screened for TH and not treated, and healthy controls

Funding Source: 149 Medical Inc.
Project Title: SBIR: Development and evaluation of diffuse correlation spectroscopy to monitor cerebral blood flow and detect intraventricular hemorrhage in extremely premature infants
Project Narrative: This project aims to develop a novel near-infrared diffuse correlation spectroscopy (DCS) system optimized for monitoring of the cerebral blood flow index in extremely premature infants. The successful development, validation and demonstration of clinical feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed technology will lead to new patient management approaches for reducing neurological injury, protecting neurocognitive function, and reducing the overall morbidity and mortality associated with prematurity.

Funding Source: Charles H Hood Foundation
Project Title: The Evolution and Consequences of Perinatal Ischemic Brain Injury
Project Narrative: Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy (HIE) is the most common form of neonatal brain injury, contributing to 25% of newborn deaths worldwide. This study aims to 1) define the nature of the temporal evolution of a perinatal ischemic brain injury, including its secondary impact on brain development, in term-born infants with HIE receiving therapeutic hypothermia compared to typical control infants; and 2) define the relationships between brain injury, subsequent cerebral development and neurodevelopmental outcome.

Lise Johnson, MD

Funding Source: Health Resources and Services Administration
Project Title: Maternal and Child Health Field-Initiated Research Program
Project Narrative: R40 Maternal and Child Health Field-Initiated Innovative Research Studies (FIRST) Program, Impact of a Newborn Behavioral Intervention on the Mental Health and Parenting of First-Time Mothers with Late-Preterm Infants

Anne CC Lee, MD

Funding Source: National Institutes of Health
Project Title: The Roles of Perinatal Nutrition, Infection and Inflammation in the Neurodevelopment of Bangladeshi infants
Project Narrative: In a rural Bangladeshi pregnancy cohort, my specific aims are to: 1) determine the associations of pregnancy undernutrition and infections on fetal inflammatory responses, 2) examine the associations of fetal inflammation and neurodevelopmental outcomes at 2 years, and 3) explore the role of inflammation in infant brain structure and function at 3 months

Funding Source: President and Fellows of Harvard College
Project Title: Low Birth-Weight Infant Feeding Exploration (LIFE)
Project Narrative: This study aims to (1) define current infant feeding practices for low birthweight infants in low-middle income countries and (2) define the acceptable, feasible and practical infant feeding strategies for low birthweight infants who can breastfeed and for those who cannot feed solely on mother’s own milk (MOM). My role is to provide neonatal expertise and help guide study design, tools, and implementation.

Funding Source: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Project Title: Lactoferrin for neuro-protection of the developing brain_2018 GCAM
Project Narrative: The specific aims of this proposal are to: 1) establish a dose response curve for and understand underlying mechanisms of neuroprotection of lactoferrin in an established preterm brain injury model in rat pups developed at the University of Geneva; 2) determine the associations of lactoferrin exposure and MRI-defined brain structure and injury at term equivalent age in an existing cohort of preterm infants at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital NICU; 3) determine levels of lactoferrin in breast milk in a cohort of mothers in rural Bangladesh.

Cindy Liu, PhD

Funding Source: National Institute of Health
Project Title: Maternal psychosis and stress as risks for offspring behavioral impairment

Funding Source: Claremont McKenna College
Project Title: RAPID: The Covid-19 Pandemic and Changes in the Stress Response: Identifying Risk and Resilience in Adults and Children

Funding Source: Trustees of Boston University
Project Title: RAPID: Trajectories of Risk and Resilience in the Health and Psychological Adjustment of College Students in Response to COVID-19

Carmen Monthe-Dreze, MD

Funding Source: American Academy of Pediatrics
Project Title: Maternal Obesity-associated Inflammation and Oxidative Stress: Impact on Offspring Neurodevelopmental Outcomes
Project Narrative: The major goal of this project is to explore mechanisms underlying association of maternal obesity with child neurodevelopment, and explore electrophysiology as a tool to uncover disturbances in specific neuronal pathways

Funding Source: Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
Project Title: Pre- and Perinatal Predictors of Childhood Obesity: Nutrition-Stress Interactions
Project Narrative: This grant proposes to characterize the association between maternal nutritional patterns during pregnancy and childhood growth trajectories through adolescence, with particular emphasis on disentangling the roles of maternal and child stress. The proposed study will contribute to our understanding of the role of maternal nutrition in longitudinal offspring growth and provide novel evidence regarding the intersection of psychosocial stress in this association.

Sarbattama (Rimi) Sen, MD

Funding Source: Giner, Inc.
Project Title: SBIR: Rapid Nutritional Analysis of Breast Milk for Neonatal Intensive Care Units
Project Narrative: This proposal is to develop a rapid, point-of-care technology for measurement of breastmilk macronutrients.

Funding Source: Tufts Medical Center, Inc.
Project Title: Lifestyle Interventions in Preparation for Pregnancy (LIPP)

Funding Source: Massachusetts Life Sciences Center
Project Title: The Lactation Lab: Improving the health of two generations by optimizing breastfeeding


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