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Department of Pediatrics

Department of Pediatrics

Neonatology research


Albert Chan, M.D.

Dr. Chan's research interest is neonatal brain injury.  Specifically, his research is focused on investigating novel therapies for periventricular leukomalacia.

Ian Griffin, M.D.

Dr. Griffin is interested in the effects of early diet of preterm infants on growth, body composition, metabolic programming, metabolic disease, and developmental outcome. The long-term objective is to identify nutritional interventions, both before and after hospital discharge, that can normalize growth and body composition, optimize development outcomes, and minimize the risks of metabolic syndrome.

Jay Milstein, M.D.

Dr. Milstein studies circulatory problems of the neonate including: (1) arterial systolic and diastolic waveform analysis; (2) myocardial dysfunction and ventricular/vascular interactions; and (3) pulmonary vascular impedance and branching patterns.  He also studies an integrative model of care that incorporates healing and curing in parallel as soon as any diagnosis is made.

Anthony Philipps, M.D.

Dr. Philipps is Professor of Pediatrics.   In addition to his clinical interests in neonatology, Dr. Philipps has had significant research interest in NIH-sponsored studies related to fetal metabolism and the endocrinology of fetal growth, with particular reference to diabetes in pregnancy. In other NIH-funded projects, he also studied  the biological significance of growth factors (hormones) present normally in milk and their potential positive effects on growth and development of premature infants. Most recently, he and others in the UC Davis Division of Neonatology and in the Department of Nutrition, School of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences are collaborating on a project related to the  effects of maternal zinc deficiency on later insulin resistance and obesity in offspring, using an animal model.

Francis Poulain, M.D.

Dr. Poulains' research investigates the role of selected surfactant apoproteins in the defenses of the lung against environmental pathogens and toxicants.

Mark Underwood, M.D.

Dr. Underwood’s research interests are focused on improving nutrition and preventing infections in premature infants.  In collaboration with the UC Davis Foods for Health Institute and the UC Davis Functional Glycobiology Program, we are exploring how human milk shapes the composition of the bacteria in the intestine and the developing immune system in premature and term infants.  We are conducting clinical trials of probiotics and prebiotics in premature infants and infants with congenital heart disease and gastroschisis.  These trials are sponsored by the NIH and the Children’s Miracle Network and described at  Our goal is to alter the composition of the intestinal bacteria to improve digestion and decrease the risk of a devastating disease of newborns, necrotizing enterocolitis.