Neonatal-Perinatal Research

Neonatal-Perinatal Research


The Department of Pediatric Neonatal-Perinatal at UT Southwestern and Children’s Health℠ is recognized as a leader in pediatric patient care, teaching and research. Led by Rashmin Savani, MBChB, the Division encompasses a group of nationally recognized faculty with a wide range  of expertise.

Team members supervise the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Children’s Health, a designated Level IV unit and the premier referral unit in North Texas. Through their expertise, the NICU provides exceptional care for infants with acute or complex medical or surgical issues, including special metabolic, neurological and genetic conditions.

Research Highlights

Participants in the NIH–NICHD Neonatal Research Network, a collaborative network of neonatal intensive care units across the U.S., we have active studies in:

  • Bronchopulmonary dysplasia  (BPD) - also called chronic lung disease, a leading morbidity of the extremely preterm infant
  • Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy  (HIE) - a life-threatening condition characterized by acute or subacute brain injury due to asphyxia
  • Necrotizing   enterocolitis (NEC) - a condition, generally affecting premature infants, in which the intestines become ischemic (lack oxygen and/or blood flow)

Clinical Research Studies

  • Neonatal resuscitation – randomized trials (e.g., temperature control, oxygen delivery and resuscitation educational interventions), observational studies (ETCO2 guidance of CPR, effectiveness of epinephrine dosing), as well as other observational studies using our unique resuscitation database
  • Individualized optimization of nutrition to improve neurodevelopmental outcomes in premature infants
  • Participation in The Children’s Hospital Neonatal Consortium, a collaborative network of Level IV NICUs across the U.S. We have active research studies in the management and outcomes of infants with severe BPD and Quality Improvement projects to reduce central line-associated bloodstream infections and hypothermia episodes in the operating room.
  • Follow-up care for very low birth weight and high-risk infants, including neurodevelopment, chronic disease and nutrition

Basic Research Studies

  • Maternal and fetal cardiovascular physiology and development
  • Animal models relating to neonatal resuscitation
  • Pathogenesis of bronchopulmonary dysplasia/ chronic lung disease and novel therapies
  • Molecular basis of vascular disease
  • Pulmonary endothelial function, nitric oxide, persistent pulmonary hypertension and calcium metabolism
  • Hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid) and its role in inflammation and endothelial function
  • Probiotics/Commensal organisms and their effects on immune mediators in the developing gut

Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Training Program

  • Fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)
  • >70 graduates since 1980, half chose a career in academic neonatology and half in clinical practice, both in the U.S. and abroad
  • 90% have published manuscripts from their research work during their fellowship
  • 95% success rate on the ABP Neonatal-Perinatal sub-board examination