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Pediatric resident Jorine studies methods to strengthen the clocks of preterm babies

February 12, 2024

In the summer of 2021, Jorine has started her BioClock post doc research at the Erasmus MC. This project is a collaboration with BioClock PhD Demy van Gilst and under supervision of dr. Ines Chaves and dr. Marijn Vermeulen and professors Bert van der Horst and Irwin Reiss. The main goal of the project is to improve the rhythms of preterm babies. In the uterus, children are exposed to daily rhythms from the mother mainly. Once they are born but still in hospital care, the environment does not always allow for clear day and night rhythms. With an intervention, Jorine will study whether a clear rhythm in light and darkness or feeding times improves the rhythm of the children at the NICU departments and whether that stimulates their development and strength.


Tell us a little about yourself, who are you, where are you from and what are your hobbies?

Hi, I’m Jorine Roelants, I’m a pediatric resident at the Erasmus MC – Sophia Children’s Hospital in Rotterdam, and I recently started as a postdoctoral researcher. In my spare time I like to do things with my husband an our daughters, Kiki (2.5y) and Jet (1y), to play tennis and to bake.

What is your background?

I studied Medicine in Rotterdam. After obtaining my medical degree I first worked as a pediatric resident. In 2014 I started my PhD on the departments of Neonatology and Obstetrics, on growth and nutrition in pregnancy and after preterm birth. I obtained my PhD degree in December 2017. Then I started my Pediatric Residency. In July I started working as a postdoctoral researcher on the bioclock.

Where will you work on your project and what is your project about?

I will work on workpackage 2.1, which is ‘Promote health and combat disease by strengthening the 24-hour rhythm in the clinic’. This project focuses on improving development and health by strengthening circadian rhythms in early life, with focus on the preterm infant. My specific focus is the intervention trial in which we will investigate the introduction of light/dark cycling during the hospital admission in preterm infants. Moreover, we focus on human milk and the presence of a circadian rhythm in milk composition.

When did you first hear about the biological clock?

During my PhD I first heared about in a research context – but with all the shift work I do, I was long before that acquainted with disruption of the clock.

What is something that people should know about you?

I often bake (or when very bus buy) cookies or cake for meetings. I truly believe that meetings are better when there is something to eat. 

To get in touch with Jorine:

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The BioClock Consortium is funded by the NWA-ORC programme of the Dutch Research Council (NWO; project number 1292.19.077).