The Connecticut Human Milk Research Center’s efforts are focused on three umbrella research initiatives:

  1. A NICU-specific nutrition and clinical database
    Researchers are creating a database to evaluate at least 15 clinical epidemiologic questions related to human milk use and clinical, growth and neurodevelopmental outcomes. Clinical and feeding data will be collected from all infants eligible to receive donor human milk. Follow-up will occur daily until NICU discharge. Specifically, data points will include maternal demographics; maternal labor and delivery data; amount of mother’s own milk, donor human milk and/or formula received; infant clinical outcomes; infant severity/acuity outcomes; and infant growth outcomes. In a subsample of this age/birth weight cohort, data from the NICU stay will be merged with follow-up data collected through post-discharge phone calls, transitional clinics and follow-up clinic visits. This approach will provide a rich source of information to characterize long-term feeding, growth and neurodevelopmental outcomes.
  2. A human milk analyzer measuring the macronutrient composition of a mother’s own milk and donor human milk
    These results will be analyzed with the clinical research database to explore clinical and growth outcomes. This research initiative will ultimately provide personalized nutrition regimes to at-risk infants through the individualized fortification of mother’s own milk or human donor milk.
  3. A wet lab dedicated to biochemical analysis of human milk