The overall aim of the current research plan is to identify novel interventions to prevent neuro-developmental impairment in the newborn. From a clinical perspective, the project targets three groups of infants:
1) infants with extremely preterm birth (< 27 gestational weeks);
2) infants who develop severe cerebral intraventricular hemorrhage (IVH) and
3) infants with serious congenital heart defects (CHD) requiring surgery with cardio-pulmonary bypass.
These groups of infants are all sensitively and specifically clinically identified at the initiation of the disease process and have a high risk for cognitive and/or neurological impairment during early childhood. Thus, important pre-requisites for a clinical implementation and subsequent evaluation of novel neuro-protective treatments are fulfilled.