Fall weather and football season have returned to us here at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute, bringing with them a fresh batch of research headlines. In this edition of our biweekly news roundup, catch up on the latest announcements for the second annual Eagles Autism Challenge, learn about new insights into the role mitochondrial DNA plays in heart disease progression, and stay updated on how CHOP helps to drive medical innovation and entrepreneurship forward in the Philadelphia community and beyond.
Editor’s Note: Jacqueline Hunter, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the Wolfe Laboratory, wrote this article as part of the Advanced Career Exploration (ACE) Fellowship at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute. The ACE program gives fellows the opportunity to pursue projects beyond their main research focus. We’re especially excited to share Dr. Hunter’s work during National Postdoc Appreciation Week.
Normally, the body responds to a bleeding event by forming a clot, which is a complicated process involving multiple proteins in an elegantly orchestrated cascade. When specific proteins of this cascade are absent, one of several debilitating disorders can occur that result in recurrent spontaneous bleeding into the joints and muscles. Researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia are using clever maneuvering to figure out new therapeutic options for patients with hemophilia A and B.
Acute myeloid leukemia (AML), the second most common leukemia in children, affects different populations of pediatric patients in different ways. With the support of a new Epidemiology Grant from Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, Richard Aplenc, MD, PhD, assistant vice president and chief clinical research officer at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, is leading a powerful research project based on the automated extraction of data to learn more about racial and ethnic disparities observed in African American children with AML.
“We’ve known for a long time that African American children do worse with treatment for acute myeloid leukemia than non-African American children,” Dr. Aplenc said. “But we’ve never really understood why that is, and there are a lot of different possibilities.”
Editor’s Note: September marks National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, a time to recognize and promote the different ways that we as a community can help prevent suicide. At PolicyLab, a Center of Emphasis at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute, our researchers study the key role that hospitals, schools, health systems, and other community institutions play in safeguarding the mental health of children and adolescents. In this guest blog post, originally appearing on PolicyLab’s blog, Stephanie Doupnik, MD, MSHP, a faculty member at PolicyLab, co-director of the inpatient Medical Behavioral Unit at CHOP, and an instructor of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania, discusses her four-year research project to identify the most effective suicide prevention practices for young people hospitalized for a suicide attempt.
Regional and national leaders in children’s health policy will convene in Old City, Philadelphia Oct. 22 to celebrate the 10th anniversary of PolicyLab, a Center of Emphasis at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute. Never one to sit on the sidelines, PolicyLab has evolved over the last decade to become an energetic force in evidence-to-action reform, shaping the policies and practices that impact the health and well-being of children and families across the country.
Along with the start of school and settling into new routines, September marks Childhood Cancer Awareness Month: a special time to support cancer research and care for patients and families impacted by the disease. Fittingly, this week’s roundup of research news highlights the remarkable impact our oncologists have made for children with cancer around the world. And on top of that, we highlight new findings that challenge the traditional notion of the teen years as a reckless time of risky behavior.
When most of us think about cancer, a number of factors — from smoking, to sun exposure, to specific organs where a disorder develops — might jump to mind. But for Adam Resnick, PhD, co-founder of the Center for Data Driven Discovery and Biomedicine (D3B) at CHOP, in order to unravel the inextricable link between childhood cancer and other rare conditions, we must visualize pediatric cancer as a process.
As a single-cell zygote proliferates into a 37 trillion-cell being, something happens in the course of its development — a dysfunction, a deviance, a DNA-driven decision — that underpins not just the development of life-changing birth defects, but a potential vulnerability to childhood cancer as well.
Microbes, monitors, and miraculous medicine converge in this week’s roundup of research-related headlines at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Keep reading to learn more about new concerns for commercially available baby monitors reported by our researchers, one family’s inspirational story of resilience and recovery after their baby daughter battled a brain tumor, and exciting upcoming events in the CHOP community, including the fifth annual symposium for microbiome research.
The Findings: Breastfeeding women who return to work may face daunting challenges as they figure out their rights in the workplace. The investigators involved in this study reported thatPhiladelphia and New York are just 2 of 151 cities from across the United States that have workplace regulations outlining protections for a nursing mother who wants to breastfeed or express milk at her place of employment. Their findings suggest that the limitations of existing federal and state legislation are not met by protections at the city-level. There is a “paucity of city-level legislation to protect the employed breastfeeding and/or pumping employee.”
About 50 percent of parents reported talking on their cell phones while driving with their young child in the vehicle, while one in three read text messages, and one in seven used social media, according to online surveys of adults across the U.S. The findings, published in a recent study from our Center for Injury Research and Prevention (CIRP) at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, also reveal that parents who used their cell phones in the car were more likely to engage in other risky driving behaviors, such as not wearing a seat belt when they were a driver and not consistently using their typical child restraint system (CRS) for their child.