Dr Vanesa Stojanovska, NHMRC Peter Doherty Early Career Fellow

Dr Vanesa Stojanovska is a member of the Perinatal Transition Research group in The Ritchie Centre.

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Areas of interest

Birth asphyxia Cerebral Palsy Fetal growth restriction (FGR) Preterm birth

Research group

Perinatal Transition


Dr Vanesa Stojanovska is a NHMRC Peter Doherty Early Career Research Fellow in the Perinatal Transition group at The Ritchie Centre, Hudson Institute of Medical Research and an Adjunct Research Fellow in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Monash University.

Dr Stojanovska’s research focuses on helping preterm babies breathe at birth. Preterm babies exposed to inflammation during pregnancy have a high incidence of breathing difficulties and brain injury, which often lead to Cerebral Palsy. Many of these babies will require invasive respiratory support at birth – and whilst this is life-saving, it can exacerbate the already ongoing inflammation, and worsen brain injury.

Dr Stojanovska utilises her expertise in neuroimmunology to study how intrauterine infection and inflammation (chorioamnionitis) affects the neural control of breathing. She also studies the efficacy of anti-inflammatory treatments for stimulating fetal and neonatal breathing. Her research aims to improve independent breathing at birth to reduce the need for (inadvertently injurious) respiratory support, and ultimately, minimise brain injury in preterm babies.

Publication highlights