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Growth and Development

Research group

Main organisation:Research Council
Lifecycle:29 Jun 2011 →  Today
Organisation profile:

GRON aims to group and structure research into the growth and development of healthy and chronically ill children. Growth and development should be viewed in broad terms, i.e. both physically, psychologically, and development of maturity and (medical) responsibilities.
The research of the group focuses on the following sub-areas:

  • Pediatric pneumology:
  • In the field of Cystic Fibrosis: Epidemiologic studies in cooperation with the Belgian CF Registry (under supervision of Sciensano), studies on microbiology, newborn screening, multicenter studies on nasal potential difference measurements, sweat testing and other biomarkers for CFTR function (organoids), the effect of COVID on CF (national and international), diagnostic challenges (CFSPID, CFTR-RD). Participation in clinical trials with new molecules targeting CFTR-dysfunction.
  • Outside Cystic Fibrosis: clinical trials on RSV, evaluation of RAS scores in RSV-bronchiolitis, tuberculosis, allergy (birth-cohort in a multidisciplinary setting).
  • Pediatric gastroenterology:
  • constipation, gastro-oesophageal reflux,  gastroparesis
  • inflammatory bowel disease (clinical studies involving new pharmaceutical developments, patients health literacy and quality of life, implementation of international registry (Improve Care Now) to gain better insights on patients' needs and therapeutic efficiency)
  • intestinal failure, malnutrition, milk allergy, nutritional and pharmacological studies.
  • Pediatric hematology-oncology and immunology: cooperation in international intervention studies in childhood cancers, studies concerning supportive care aspects in childhood cancer, studies in a coagulation disorders, cooperation with several international partners for patient based research in primary immunodeficiencies, defects in the innate immune system, management of invasive fungal infections, and end-of-life care and pain treatment in children.
  • Pediatric Nephrology: cooperation in national and international intervention and observational studies in phase II and lll trials, PK/PD studies, studies concerning arterial hypertension, studies with different antibiotics both with gram + and gram – bacteria’s, in childhood enuresis and children with LUTS symptoms.  Cooperation with several international partners for patient based research in CKD and genetic renal diseases.
  • Neonatology: cooperation in multicenter interventional randomized controlled trials; Respiratory support with neutrally adjusted ventilator assist in premature infants.
  • Child psychiatry and psychology: Research on New authority & Nonviolent resistance; Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; Autism Spectrum Disorder; Neuromodulation techniques; Eating disorders; Somatoform disorders; Childhood trauma; Attachment, adoption and foster care; and Infant mental health.
  • Deontology & Ethics: deontological, ethical and legal implications of the care for minors.
  • Pediatric endocrinology and diabetology:
  • the effect of growth hormone treatment in children with short stature; 
  • long term effects of childhood diabetes, obesity and anorexia nervosa;  pharmacological and surgical treatment of childhood obesity; impact of newest insulins and newest technologies such as insulin pumps / CGMs in type 1 childhood diabetes;
  • the outcome of precocious puberty treatment;
  • disorders of bone mineralization in children;
  • prevention of infertility, such as in Klinefelter patients and oncological patients (in close collaboration with BITE  - http://emgebite.vub.ac.be/);
  • outcome of testosteron substitution therapy;
  • diagnostics and treatment of familial hypercholesterolemia.
Keywords:Growth, Children, Development, Chronical Disease
Disciplines:Other biological sciences