GROWTH Network

The GROWTH consortium, funded by the European Commission (2019-2023), is made up to train a new generation of researchers working on new pathological insights, biomarker diagnostics and personalized nutritional interventions for intestinal failure in neonates and preterm infants.


Academic and industry partners, covering various disciplines ranging from fundamental research to clinical paediatrics and analytical chemistry to organoid and gut-on-chip applications, have teamed up in the European Union.

Research Programme

GROWTH aims to set-up a new European platform that trains young scientists in the industry-led exploration of innovative routes to fully exploit the potential of early life nutrition to prevent inflammatory disease. GROWTH coordinates 8 individual research projects.


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Predictive factors for surgical treatment in preterm neonates with necrotizing enterocolitis

Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is one of the most common and lethal gastrointestinal diseases in preterm infants. Early recognition of infants in need for surgical intervention might enable early intervention. In this multicenter case-control study, performed in nine neonatal intensive care units, preterm born infants (< 30 weeks of gestation) diagnosed with NEC (stage ≥ IIA) between October 2014 and August 2017 were divided into two groups: (1) medical (conservative treatment) and (2) surgical NEC (sNEC). Perinatal, clinical, and laboratory parameters were collected daily up to clinical onset of NEC. Univariate and multi- variate logistic regression analyses were applied to identify potential predictors for sNEC. In total, 73 preterm infants with NEC (41 surgical and 32 medical NEC) were included.

You can access the full article HERE.

Citation: El Manouni El Hassani S, Niemarkt HJ, Derikx JPM, Berkhout DJC, Ballón AE, de Graaf M, de Boode WP, Cossey V, Hulzebos CV, van Kaam AH, Kramer BW, van Lingen RA, Vijlbrief DC, van Weissenbruch MM, Benninga MA, de Boer NKH, de Meij TGJ. Predictive factors for surgical treatment in preterm neonates with necrotizing enterocolitis: a multicenter case-control study. Eur J Pediatr. 2021 Feb;180(2):617-625. doi: 10.1007/s00431-020-03892-1. Epub 2020 Dec 2. PMID: 33269424; PMCID: PMC7813726.