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Research on the newborn infant pain using neuroimaging

Paediatric neuroimaging 7

The newborn infant pain investigations aim to address the following questions:

What are the neuro-developmental changes that underlie the beginning of human pain perception – and how are these modulated by early life nociceptive/pain exposure?

Can fMRI be used to identify, in a longitudinal fashion, the cortical and subcortical structures activated by noxious stimulation in the developing human brain?

Is morphine an effective analgesic for procedural pain in newborn infants?

Group Head Biography: 


Rebeccah Slater is an Associate Professor of Paediatric Neuroimaging and a Senior Wellcome Trust Research Fellow. She is also a Fellow of Green Templeton College.

Rebeccah studied Physics (BSc) at Imperial College and Neuroscience (MSc) at UCL, and in 2007 was awarded her PhD at UCL under the supervision of Prof Maria Fitzgerald. Since 2012 she has lead The Paediatric and Infant Pain & Anaesthesia (PiPA) research group, which focuses on understanding the mechanisms that underlie the development of pain perception in the human infant. She uses a range of non-invasive brain imaging tools, including EEG and fMRI, to explore the development of pain perception in the human nervous system.

She has published many articles about infant pain and has been passionately involved in science communication and the public engagement of science. She has taken part in numerous discussions on TV and radio, including BBC Radio 4, The BBC World Service and Horizon. Rebeccah is a PI at The Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging (WIN), and she is based at the John Radcliffe Children’s Hospital Neonatal Unit where she aims to improve the measurement and treatment of infant pain.