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Dr Steve Kempley, MA, MB, BChir, FRCP, FRCPCH


Clinical Senior Lecturer in Paediatrics


Having been born in East London, Steve Kempley studied Medical Sciences, Experimental Psychology and Clinical Medicine at the University of Cambridge. He moved into Paediatrics in Glasgow immediately from medical school, also gaining early paediatric training at King's College, Great Ormond Street, Liverpool and Camberwell. As Clinical Lecturer in Neonatal Medicine at King's College he worked with Professor Harold Gamsu, using Doppler ultrasound to study the neonatal circulation, with a particular interest in the aetiology of necrotising enterocolitis.

He joined the Neonatal Unit at the Royal London Hospital in 1993 and developed standards and capacity in this service. He led the development of the Neonatal Transfer Service for London, Kent, Surrey and Sussex, setting up and delivering the first intensive care Neonatal Transport Team for London. His clinical research in neonatology has continued since that time. In 2007 he transferred to the Medical School, taking on the clinical lead for Paediatric education in the MBBS course.

He is a clinical neonatologist and he remains actively involved in the care of sick, premature and vulnerable newborn babies in East London.


Steve Kempley is a Neonatal Paediatrician who has been working in East London for over 20 years. He moved to the Medical School in 2007 and has a lead role for Paediatric medical student education in our MBBS course. His Research interests are focussed on clinical Neonatology.


Dr Steve Kempley takes a number of lead roles in the delivery of medical student education in relation to Paediatrics and Human Development. He organises teaching and clinical placements for students in Paediatrics during their 4th year, but also contributes actively to teaching in the first 2 years of the MBBS course. He has always been actively involved in student education, developing the school's first Paediatric OSCE examination in 1993.

Module Lead for Human Development in Year 4, Clinical Systems director for Human Development teaching, Paediatric Clinical Academic Unit Education Lead.

He is Staff President of our student mountaineering club (Barts and the London Alpine Club) and helps support Teddy Bear Hospital (a student project working with local schools).

The Centre for Genomics and Child Health maintains a coordinating role for the design and delivery of the Child Health component of the Human Development Module. This is delivered in years 1, 2 and 4. Detailed outcomes from this teaching can be found on COMPAS:


Research Interests:

Steve’s main research interest has been in the use of Doppler ultrasound in the investigation of the neonatal circulation. Studies have been published on superior mesenteric artery blood flow in premature babies and many studies have also included analysis of other regional circulations, including the measurement of common carotid blood flow in premature infants. These studies have investigated the effects of fetal growth restriction, birth, the circulatory effects of exogenous surfactant, and the prediction of necrotising enterocolitis.

He has an interest in neonatal infections and has carried out collaborative studies with microbiologists and virologists. Studies have also examined the effect of systemic infection on the splanchnic circulation.

Work in service organisation and delivery has contributed to improving the safety of inter-hospital transfer of newborn babies. He carried out a census of neonatal transfers in London & the South-East of England which provided a driving impetus to establishing the Neonatal Transport Service. Recent work on tube length for endotracheal intubation has produced guidance incorporated in to European Resuscitation Council guidelines.

He was one of the core Clinical Investigators for the multicentre ADEPT trial to examine the effects of feeding practice on necrotising enterocolitis in growth-restricted newborn babies. He is currently supervising a randomised trial examining blood pressure intervention levels for hypotensive, extremely preterm babies.


Kempley ST, Gupta N, Linsell L, Dorling J, McCormick K, Mannix P, Juszczak E, Brocklehurst P, Leaf A; on behalf of the ADEPT Trial Collaborative Group. Feeding infants below 29 weeks' gestation with abnormal antenatal Doppler: analysis from a randomised trial. Arch Dis Child Fetal Neonatal Ed. 2013 Aug 23. doi: 10.1136/archdischild-2013-304393.

Leaf A, Dorling J, Kempley ST, McCormick K, Mannix P, Linsell L, Juszczak E, Brocklehurst P; Abnormal Doppler Enteral Prescription Trial Collaborative Group. Early or delayed enteral feeding for preterm growth-restricted infants: a randomized trial. Pediatrics. 2012 May;129(5):e1260-8. doi: 10.1542/peds.2011-2379.

Gonzales-Marin C, Spratt DA, Millar MR, Simmonds M, Kempley S, Allaker RP. Levels of periodontal pathogens in neonatal gastric aspirates and possible maternal sites of origin. Mol Oral Microbiol. 2011 Oct; 26(5):277-90.

Kempley ST, Moreiras JW, Petrone FL. Endotracheal tube length for neonatal intubation. Resuscitation. 2008 Jun;77(3):369-73.doi: 10.1016/j.resuscitation.2008.02.002.

Murdoch E, Sinha AK, Shanmugalingam ST, Smith GCS, Kempley ST. Doppler flow velocimetry in the Superior Mesenteric Artery on the First Day of Life in Preterm Infants and the Risk of Neonatal Necrotizing Enterocolitis. Pediatrics 2006; 118: 1999-2003.

View all Steve Kempley's Research Publications at:

PhD Supervision

There is an active group of Neonatal researchers in East London. They link the Centre for Genomics and Child Health with the Neonatal Units of the Homerton Hospital and Barts Health.

In Barts Health, research collaborations have recently involved Dr Ajay Sinha, Dr Divyen Shah, Dr Nandiran Ratnavel and Dr Syed Mohinuddin. Dr Sujith Pereira is Clinical Research Fellow at Barts Health working on a randomised trial of blood pressure intervention levels for neonatal hypotension, examining echocardiographic and neurophysiological parameters in relation to neonatal circulatory support.

We have close links with the Neonatal Research team at the Homerton Hospital; together we are actively involved in supporting Obstetric research in the Blizard Institute and East London.

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