Research and Scholarly Activities

Trainees interested in research are free to participate in an ongoing project, either within the Division or outside the Division, or design a project that is in concert with their interests and career goals.

University of North Carolina

  • ELGAN Study
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Drs. Bose and Marshall
    A multi-center, epidemiology-based study examining biomarkers of neonatal white matter damage and other inflammation mediated outcomes in extremely low-gestation age newborns – study completed. Follow-up examinations are underway.
  • Factors associated with treatment for hypotension in extremely low gestational age newborns during the first postnatal week
    Dr. Laughon
    This study will identify the blood pressures of extremely low gestational age newborns (ELGANs) that prompt intervention, identify other infant characteristics associated with receipt of therapies intended to raise blood pressure, and assess the inter-institutional variability in the use of these therapies.
  • Treatment strategies to prevent or close a patent ductus arteriosus in preterm infants and outcomes
    Dr Laughon
    This study will describe the current use of treatments to prevent or treat the patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) in preterm infants, examine the association between different treatment strategies and neonatal outcomes, and review the variation in these practices between centers.
  • Antecedents, modifiers, and pathophysiology of pulmonary deterioration in ELGANs
    Dr. Laughon
    This proposed project will identify the antecedents and modifiers of pulmonary deterioration in ELGANs and Identify tracheal inflammatory biomarkers associated with this clinical deterioration.
  • Surfaxin® (Lucinactant) in very low birth weight infants at risk for developing bronchopulmonary dysplasia
    Dr. Laughon
    This randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial will assess the safety and efficacy of Surfaxin following resolution of acute respiratory distress syndrome.
  • Outcomes analysis in the NICU
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Veness-Meehan
    Supervises various quality improvement projects and outcomes analysis for the Vermont-Oxford Database.
  • Outcomes of Infants Diagnosed Prenatally and Postnatally with Lethal Birth Defects
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Doron
    A retrospective study comparing age at death, intensity of medical treatment, and neonatal hospital costs in infants diagnosed prenatally and postnatally with lethal birth defects.
  • Perinatologists' and Neonatologists' Opinions Regarding the Definition and Treatment of Lethal Birth Defects
    Dr. Mia Doron
    This study surveys practicing perinatologists and neonatologists in the United States regarding which birth defects they consider to be lethal and what treatment they would provide to such patients.   
  • Surrogate Decision Making Study
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine and UNC Hospitals Ethics Committee, Dr. Doron
    A survey of adult UNC Hospitals patients evaluating whether the health care decision maker whom patients would choose if they were to become incompetent matches the decision maker who would be authorized by North Carolina law.
  • North Carolina Neonatal Collaborative
    Drs. Bose and McCaffrey
    The purpose of the Collaborative is to improve the clinical care and outcomes of North Carolina’s high risk newborns.  Risk-adjusted indicators of quality of care will be compared across centers that deliver neonatal care to support quality improvement across the state.

International Research

  • First Breath NICHD Study: Neonatal care in Developing Countries
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Engmann
    An international, randomized, interventional trial examining the efficacy of NRP versus conventional (WHO) training in preventing birth asphyxia in community settings
  • Survey of Neonatal Health Care in Ghana
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Engmann
    Utilizes secondary datasets (DHS, WHO) to describe the state of newborn health in Ghana
  • Perinatal iron deficiency, birth depression and neonatal sepsis in Ghana.
    Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Dr. Engmann
    An observational trial quantifying perinatal iron deficiency in pregnant mothers and neonatal outcomes

Basic Science Research

  • IGFs and White Matter Damage in the Neonate
    Dr. Price
    This research examines the pathophysiology of white matter damage in preterm infants. Animal models are used to elucidate the role of hypoxia and inflammation in injury to oligodendrocytes. In addition, we investigate the role of the insulin-like growth factor family in the prevention of white matter damage to the neonatal brain using various transgenic mouse models of IGF over- and underexpression.
  • Role of BB1 in Brain Development
    Dr. Moats-Staats
    This research focuses on the cellular processes controlling brain growth and development.  A primary area of investigation is determination of the role of BB1, a novel protein essential for mammalian cell cycle progression, in intracellular signaling cascades operative during brain development and differentiation.  A second area of investigation is the study of the role of the insulin-like growth factor system in oligodendrocyte development and repair of brain after injury.  Transgenic animals, cell culture studies, molecular biology methodology, cell biology, and biochemical techniques are used in these two areas of research.


  1. Overview
  2. Clinical Resources
  3. Teaching Resources
  4. Duties and Responsibilities
  5. Research and Scholarly Activities
  6. Application Process