Chair of Metabolism, Endocrinology and Nutrition

Sascha  Verbruggen

Dr. Sascha Verbruggen works as attending staff in the Department of Pediatric Intensive Care, ErasmusMC - Sophia Children’s Hospital, Rotterdam, The Netherlands. He is a clinician-scientist focusing on nutrition and metabolism in critical illness, with a special interest on the long-term consequences for critically ill children. Clinically he is responsible for the (neonatal) surgical intensive care unit and is a member of the neonatal and pediatric Extra Corporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) team.

In 2007-2008 Dr Verbruggen worked as research fellow in nutrition and metabolism at the Children Nutrition Research Center (CNRC), and the PICU of the Texas Children’s Hospital, Houston, Texas, USA. After his return to Rotterdam, he began his pediatric clinical work in the Pediatric ICU of the Erasmus MC – Sophia children’s hospital, while continuing his research in the field of nutrition & metabolism in critically ill children. This led to his PhD “Protein, Energy, and their Interaction in Critically Ill Children” in December 2010.

Together with Dr. KFM Joosten, he has established a nutrition and metabolic research unit, with ongoing research regarding nutrition and metabolism in critically ill children at the Erasmus MC – Sophia Children’s Hospital. He was the Principle Investigator (in Rotterdam) of the multicenter study Paediatric Early versus Late Parenteral Nutrition in Critical illness - PEPaNIC’, of which the results were published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2016.  Currently he is involved as principle investigator (in Rotterdam) of the PEPaNIC long term follow-up study. This follow-up study not only focusses on the long term consequences of parenteral nutrition in the critically ill child and the mechanistic principles potentially responsible for the short and long term outcome, but also on the health-economic consequences of malnutrition and our interventions in the PICU.

Since 2018 he is the chair of the Metabolism and Nutrition section of the European Society of Pediatric and Neonatal Intensive Care (ESPNIC). The mission of this section is to provide the optimal nutritional and metabolic support to ensure the best short- and long-term outcome for every critically ill child. Therefore we need to elucidate the causes and consequences of metabolic and nutritional changes in critically ill children.This would pave the way forward to individualized nutrition and treatment in the right modality at the right time of the disease course. The Metabolism and Nutrition section is working hard to present new nutrition guidelines for the PICU and to provide an optimal network for future studies.

The ESPNIC provides the platform for nurses, dietitians and clinicians to collaborate on clinical and research challenges in the field of critical care metabolism and nutrition.