Friday, November 8, 2013

Cutting Edge Research at URI Showcased on Rhode Island PBS

WSBE Rhode Island PBS and the University of Rhode Island announced a new collaboration this week to bring public attention to the cutting edge research projects and scientific advances at the University.

A variety of research projects will be showcased quarterly in a series of half-hour prime-time features. The first documentary, Baby Talk: Unlocking the Secrets of the Baby Brain, premieres on November 14 at 9:30 p.m. on WSBE Rhode Island PBS (over the air on digital 36.1; Cox 08 / 1008HD, Verizon FiOS 08 / 508HD, and Full Channel 08; DirecTV 36 / 3128HD, Dish Network 7776; in MA, Comcast 819HD and Verizon FiOS 18 / 518HD).

Additionally, short URI Today segments will air between regularly scheduled programs. Topics of these 2-6 minute segments will range from growing tomatoes to the study of the secretions from the blowholes of whales.

Programs and segments are being co-produced by the University of Rhode Island New Media department and Rosewood Productions.

“We’re pleased to be able to recognize the excellent work of the URI faculty, staff, and students, and to share it with a wider audience on Rhode Island PBS,” said David W. Piccerelli, president of WSBE Rhode Island PBS.

“Local stories that touch the lives of real people in our community have a home on Rhode Island PBS,” he said. “We are committed to sharing those stories as part of our mission, amplifying individual voices that might not otherwise be heard. And when the local stories have national – even global – significance, we feel an added sense of Rhode Island pride in showcasing the gems found in our own back yard,” he added.

In Baby Talk: Unlocking the Secrets of the Baby Brain, premature babies, some as tiny as the palm of

Sean, now an adult and seen here with his Mom, holds a tiny 
shirt he wore as a premature infant. Sean is a participant in a 
longitudinal study that boasts 85% retention rate over 
more than 20 years. 
an adult hand, lie in incubators linked to monitors and lifesaving equipment. The care in a neonatal intensive care unit is extraordinary, the devotion unceasing, and so is the worry - about the next minute, the next month, the next 10 years - especially for parents. But research being done by two University of Rhode Island nursing professors is showing that a simple delivery room procedure and interventions throughout childhood could mean improved health and easier transitions to adult life.

Baby Talk: Unlocking the Secrets of the Baby Brain takes an intimate look at the work of Mary Sullivan, interim dean of URI’s College of Nursing, who is spearheading the longest running U.S. study of premature infants, and Clinical Professor Emerita Judith Mercer, who has found that delaying umbilical cord clamping for pre-term babies produces dramatic health benefits.