A photo of Nehal Parikh.

Attending Neonatologist, Perinatal Institute

Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics


My Biography & Research


Dr. Nehal Parikh’s singular goal is to prevent neurodevelopmental disabilities. Following rigorous training in translational research and clinical trials, he embarked on studies of etiology, prediction and prevention of neurodevelopmental disabilities in high-risk newborns. He has led or co-led several cohort studies of advanced brain MRI in very preterm infants, clinical trials of neuroprotective therapies in high-risk newborns, and the development of the NICHD NRN Extremely Preterm Birth Outcomes prognostic calculator and website. Increased survival of extremely preterm infants has contributed to a higher prevalence of survivors with motor, cognitive, and behavioral/psychiatric abnormalities. Accurate diagnosis of these abnormalities takes 2 to 3 years. These early years are when the brain is most active in building its wiring system and optimally receptive to change and healing. Thus, when the diagnosis is delayed by up to 3 years, we are losing precious time. Newer approaches to diagnosis, prediction and prevention of developmental disabilities are urgently needed to improve the long-term quality of life of high-risk newborns.

The Parikh lab employs advanced brain MRI tools such as volumetric, diffusion, and functional MRI for early identification of biomarkers of brain injury/delayed development that are predictive of disabilities in individual high-risk neonates/infants. The lab’s current focus is to understand the nature of the commonly encountered diffuse white matter abnormalities and to develop early prognostic models of motor, cognitive, and behavioral abnormalities in a geographic cohort of 500 very preterm infants. This important step will facilitate risk stratification, soon after birth, to design clinical trials of targeted neuroprotective interventions during the critical window of the first 3 years after birth when brain plasticity is at its peak.

Clinical Interests

Evidence-based and family-centered care of very premature infants and term infants with asphyxia/neonatal encephalopathy; critically-ill newborns

Research Interests

Early diagnosis of perinatal brain injury/delayed brain development; early detection and prevention of neurodevelopmental disabilities

Academic Affiliation

Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics


Perinatal, Neonatology, Neonatology, Newborn Intensive Care NICU, Imaging

My Education

DO: NY College of Osteopathic Medicine of NY Institute of Technology, Long Island, NY, 1996.

Residency: Pediatrics, Winthrop University Hospital of SUNY Stony Brook, Long Island, NY, 1999.

Fellowship: Neonatology, Thomas Jefferson University of Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, PA, 2002.

MS: Translational/Clinical Research, University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Houston, TX, 2007.

Certification: Pediatrics, 1996.

Certification: Neonatology, 2003.

My Publications

He L, Li H, Holland SK, Yuan W, Altaye M, Parikh NA. Early prediction of cognitive deficits in very preterm infants using functional connectome data in an artificial neural network framework. Neuroimage: Clinical. 2018;18:290-297.

Laptook AR, Shankaran S, Tyson JE, Munoz B, Bell EF, Goldberg RN, Parikh NA, et al. Effect of Therapeutic Hypothermia Initiated After 6 Hours of Age on Death or Disability Among Newborns With Hypoxic-Ischemic Encephalopathy: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA. 2017;318(16):1550-1560.  

Parikh, NA. Advanced Neuroimaging and its Role in Predicting Neurodevelopmental Outcomes in Very Preterm Infants. Seminars in Perinatology. 2016;40(8):530-541.

He L, Parikh NA. Brain Functional Network Connectivity Development in Very Preterm Infants: The First Six Months. Early Human Development. 2016;98:29-35.

Pogribna U, Burson K, Lasky RE, Narayana PA, Evans PW, Parikh NA. Role of Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI) as an Independent Predictor of Cognitive and Language Development in Extremely Preterm Infants. Am J of Neuroradiol. 2014;35(4):790-796.

Kaur S, Powell S, He L, Pierson C, Parikh NA. Reliability and repeatability of quantitative tractography methods for mapping structural white matter connectivity in preterm and term infants at term-equivalent age. PLoS One. 2014;9(1):e85807.

Parikh NA, He L, Bonfante-Mejia E, Hochhauser L, Evans P, Burson K, Kaur S. Automatically Quantified Diffuse Excessive High Signal Intensity on MRI Predicts Cognitive Development in Preterm Infants. Pediatr Neurol. 2013;49(6):424-30.

Parikh NA, Lasky RE, Kennedy KA, McDavid G, Tyson JE. Perinatal factors and regional brain volume abnormalities at term in a cohort of extremely low birth weight infants. PLoS ONE. 2013;8(5):e62804.

Parikh NA, Kennedy KA, Lasky RE, McDavid G, Tyson JE. Pilot Randomized Trial of Hydrocortisone in Ventilator-Dependent Extremely Preterm Infants: Effects on Regional Brain Volumes. J Pediatr. 2012;162(4):685-690.

Yu X, Zhang Y, Lasky RE, Datta S, Parikh NA, Narayana PA. Comprehensive Brain MRI Segmentation in High Risk Preterm Newborns. PLoS One. 2010;5(11):e13874.