Mid-childhood outcomes after medical interventions (i.e., dextrose gel for preventing low glucose levels or extra protein for babies born very preterm)

Project Code: 10456254

Faculty: Faculty of Education and Social Work

Department: Learning, Development and Professional Practice

Main Supervisor: Associate Professor Gavin Brown

Principal investigator: Dist Prof Jane Harding

Application open date: 04 Nov 2019

Application deadline: 01 Feb 2021

Enrolment information: NZ Citizens, NZ Permanent Residents, International


The educational outcomes of children who had low blood glucose as newborn babies or poor nutrition at early school age is unknown.

This project will involve assessing growth, development and behaviour of children at 6-7 years who took part in either the hPOD trial of dextrose gel or the ProVIDE trial of additional protein.

This project is part of a 5-year HRC program grant.

What we are looking for in a successful applicant

Experience in a education-related discipline. Examples include (but are not limited to) educational psychology, education, developmental psychology, psychometrics, neonatology, nursing, midwifery, paediatrics, obstetrics, and nutrition.


 i) To develop a screen-based assessment of academic, cognitive, physical, and behavioural skills to be administered at school in 6-7-year old children.

ii) To use this assessment to determine the relationships between early medical interventions and early schooling development.

Other information

In addition to the main supervisor, the student will have supervision from at least one of: Dr Chris McKinlay; Associate Professor Trecia Wouldes; Distinguished Professor Jane Harding; Professor Frank Bloomfield

Here is a link to the ProVIDE study.

Relevant publications:

Bloomfield FH, Crowther CA, Harding JE, Jiang Y, Conlon CA, Cormack BE.  The ProVIDe study: The impact of protein intravenous nutrition on development in extremely low birthweight babies.  BMC Pediatrics.2015, 15:100.  DOI: 10.1186/s12887-015-0411-y.  URL: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2431/15/100

Brown J, Embleton N, Harding JE, McGuire W.  Multi-nutrient fortification of human milk for preterm infants.  Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Issue 5, Art. No.: CD000343.  DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000343.pub3, 2016.

Harding JE, Cormack BE, Alexander T, Alsweiler JM, Bloomfield FH.  Advances in nutrition of the newborn infant. (Invited review).  Lancet 389: 1660-68, 2017.

Amissah EA, Brown J, Harding JE.  Protein supplementation of human milk for promoting growth in preterm infants.  Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Issue 6, Art. No. CD000433, 2018. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD000433.pub2

Here is further information about the hPOD trial.

Relevant publications:

Harris DL, Weston PJ, Signal M, Chase JG, Harding JE.  Dextrose gel for treating neonatal hypoglycaemia:  A randomized placebo-controlled trial (The Sugar Babies Study).  Lancet 382: 2077-83, 2013. 

Harris DL, Alsweiler JM, Ansell JM, Gamble GD, Thompson B, Wouldes TA, Yu T-Y, Harding JE on behalf of the CHYLD Study Team.  Outcome at 2 years after dextrose gel treatment for neonatal hypoglycemia; Follow up of a randomized trial.  Journal of Pediatrics 170: 545-59, 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2015.10.066 . 

HegartyJE, Harding JE, GambleGD, CrowtherCA, EdlinR, AlsweilerJM.  Prophylactic oral dextrose gel for newborn babies at risk of neonatal hypoglycaemia: A randomised controlled dose-finding trial (the pre-hPOD study).  PLOS Medicine 13 (10): e1002155, 2016. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1002155. 

Hegarty JE, Harding JE, Crowther CA, Brown J, Alsweiler J.  Oral dextrose gel to prevent hypoglycaemia in at-risk neonates.  Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Issue 7. Art. No.: CD012152, 2017.  DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD012152.pub2.

Shah R, Harding JE, Brown J, McKinlay CJD. Neonatal glycemia and neurodevelopmental outcomes: A systematic review and meta-analysis.  Neonatology 115:116–126, 2019. DOI:10.1159/000492859





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