Division Highlights - Neonatology

The Division of Neonatology promotes the health and well-being of the newborn, whether critically ill, premature, or in need of special observation.

Research interests include genetic contributors to premature birth, nutrition in neonates (with special emphasis on iron metabolism and vitamin supplementation), chronic complications of prematurity including lung and vision problems of prematurity, infection and inflammation, placental biology vascular adaptations in pregnancy, and models and methods of maternal-infant health care.

2010 Highlights

  • Georgia Ditzenberger, NNP, RNC, PhD, received $47,478 from the Meriter Foundation for core equipment in the Meriter Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) Simulation Center.
  • Frank Greer, MD, supported the American Academy of Pediatrics in a variety of senior leadership roles. Last year, he also testified to the Food and Drug Administration on issues related to banked human breast milk.
  • Julie Kessel, MD, embraced the role of clinical liaison to pediatric cardiology and cardiothoracic surgery. She complements the pediatric intensivist’s expertise in managing neonates at American Family Children’s Hospital who have serious congenital heart disease and who need surgical treatment.
  • Matthew Maruna, MD, joined the division.
  • Bikash Pattnaik, PhD, received approximately $120,000 total in research funding from the Meriter Foundation, the UW Medical School Research Committee, and the UW Institute of Clinical and Translational Research.
  • De-Ann Pillers, MD, PhD, was awarded a three-year, $300,000 grant from the Hartwell Foundation to identify fetal genetic risk factors for premature birth. She also received $47,176 from the Meriter Foundation to study chronic lung disease in premature infants.
  • Under the direction of Neena Shah, MD, the division partnered with the Meriter Hospital NICU and the Division of Women’s Health to enroll in the Vermont-Oxford Network’s NICU7 Quality Collaborative Multicenter project.


De-Ann M. Pillers, MD, PhD

Professor and Division Chief

Georgia R. Ditzenberger, NNP, RNC, PhD

Assistant Professor

Frank R. Greer, MD


Julie M. Kessel, MD

Associate Professor

Pamela J. Kling, MD

Associate Professor

Matthew D. Maruna, MD


Neena D. Shah, MD

Clinical Associate Professor


Recent Publications

Baker RD, Greer FR; Committee on Nutrition American Academy of Pediatrics. Diagnosis and prevention of iron deficiency and iron-deficiency anemia in infants and young children (0-3 years of age). Pediatrics. 2010 Nov;126(5):1040-50.

Greer FR. Commentary: concerns for complementary feeding of infants in Brazil. J Pediatr (Rio J). 2010 May-Jun;86(3):169-70.

Greer FR. The role of pediatricians as innovators in pediatric nutrition. Nestle Nutr Workshop Ser Pediatr Program. 2010;66:191-203.

Greer FR. Vitamin K the basics--what's new? Early Hum Dev. 2010 Jul;86 Suppl 1:43-7.

Tetrick MA, Greer FR, Benevenga NJ. Blood D-(-)-3-hydroxybutyrate concentrations after oral administration of trioctanoin, trinonanoin, or tridecanoin to newborn rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Comp Med. 2010;60(6):486-90.

Thomas DW, Greer FR; American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Nutrition; American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition. Probiotics and prebiotics in pediatrics. Pediatrics. 2010 Dec;126(6):1217-31.

Meyer KM, Koch JM, Ramadoss J, Kling PJ, Magness RR. Ovine surgical model of uterine space restriction: interactive effects of uterine anomalies and multifetal gestations on fetal and placental growth. Biol Reprod. 2010 Nov;83(5):799-806.

Grant Support

Principal Investigator Funding Agency Title
Kling, Pamela Thrasher Research Fund Early Screening and Interventions for Infants At-Risk for Iron Deficiency
Kling, Pamela UWF - Wisconsin Partnership - MERC Closing the Gap of Pediatric Health Disparities:  Discerning the Causes and Consequences of Iron Deficiency in Infancy
Pattnaik, Bikash UW - ICTR Human RPE Cell Electrophysiology to Model Eye-Disease
Pattnaik, Bikash UW - Graduate School Lipotoxicity Through Inwardly Rectifying Potassium Channels (Kir) as a Mechanism of Eye Disease
Pillers, De-Ann The Hartwell Foundation Genetics of the Innate Immune Response of the Infant as a Potential Biomarker for Premature Birth
Pillers, De-Ann Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society GIAR Award - T. Schroder

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