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Research

All fellows in the Neonatal-Perinatal Fellowship complete an individual research project and scholarly product.  Fellows in the Division of Neonatology can engage in a broad variety of research opportunities depending on their unique area of interest, working closely with mentors from the Division of Neonatology, the Department of Pediatrics, and the broader UMass Community.  The goal of the fellowship program’s research training is to provide a foundation for successful independent inquiry by developing research interests and skills in a supportive, collegial environment. 

Potential areas of research include


Clinical and Translational Research     Ethics     Quality Improvement

Perinatal Epidemiology      Medical Education    Clinical Outcomes Research

First Year

The goal of the first year fellows’ research experience is to expose them to a broad range of research opportunities.  Fellows are introduced to the ongoing research projects on the unit during weekly research conference.  Structured didactic sessions introduce them to different types of research design and topics.  First year fellows are expected to be familiar with and assist faculty with ongoing research and quality improvement projects.  This provides the fellows opportunity for training and experience in data management, analysis, and interpretation. The results may be used for initial efforts at preparation of abstracts and research presentations.  Fellows are encouraged to attend a regional and/or national research conference during the first year.  By the end of the first year, fellows will have identified an academic mentor and area of research focus.

Second and Third Year

Clinical responsibilities are decreased during the second and third year to allow the fellow to focus on their research training and area of academic focus. In the summer of the second year, all fellows can participate in coursework through the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences to develop skills in clinical biostatistics and epidemiology.  Fellows work with the faculty to create an academic mentorship team which will assist them as they complete their independent academic research project.  Fellows have the opportunity to present their work at both regional and national academic meetings.

All fellows also have the opportunity to obtain a sponsored Masters in Clinical Investigation during fellowship.

Current Fellow Research Projects

  • An Evaluation of a Standardized Weaning Program for Low Flow Oxygen in Very Low Birth Weight Premature Infants

This randomized controlled clinical trial to evaluates a standardized weaning algorithm utilizing state of the art recording oximeters versus routine clinical practice

  • Alterations of Immune Biomarkers and the Gut Microbiome of Premature Infants Exposed to Donor Milk Compared to Mother’s Own Milk

This prospective cohort study analyzes changes in immune biomarkers, microbiome, and clinical outcomes in infants exposed to exclusive mother’s milk, exclusive donor milk, versus a combination of both