Category Archive: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Jan 11 2018

Is Autism Associated With Stronger or Weaker Brain Connections?

The Finding:

In a new study that sheds light on a longstanding paradox in autism research, investigators showed how children and teens with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) can have both stronger and weaker brain connections than their typically developing peers. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) revealed that while individuals with ASD have weaker brain connections compared to their peers overall (a measure known as absolute connectivity), they simultaneously exhibited stronger connections within the brain networks implicated in attention and social cognition compared to their other networks (a measure known as relative connectivity). Additionally, the more these brain connections differed from typical development, the more severe the child’s ASD symptoms seemed to be.

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Dec 21 2017

Groundbreaking Gene Therapy Approved for Inherited Retinal Blindness

More than a decade of studies led by researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania culminated this week with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of an innovative one-time gene therapy product indicated for the treatment of patients with a rare, inherited form of retinal blindness.

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Nov 13 2017

Strengthening Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Research: Antonio Rosato

From the time Antonio Rosato was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) at age 4½, his family was eager for him to participate in a clinical research trial. They wanted to give him access to the latest advances in pharmacological and disease management approaches for DMD, an opportunity that Antonio’s uncle Artie, who was diagnosed with the same neuromuscular disease four decades ago, did not have.

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Nov 8 2017

Is Mindfulness Important for Mothers of Babies With Heart Conditions?

The Findings:

A cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) filled with tiny infants connected to collections of tubes and buzzing monitors can be an intimidating and overwhelming place for a mother who is worried about her newborn with congenital heart disease (CHD). A Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia team of nurse researchers conducted a qualitative study in which mothers of babies who have a complex heart condition described the post-diagnostic period, surgery, and the CICU stay as extremely stressful. The researchers also examined mothers’ coping mechanisms, and they identified mindfulness as a potential helpful early intervention tool to reduce mothers’ stress.

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Aug 31 2017

A Moment to Remember: First-of-its-Kind Cancer Treatment Approved by FDA

It was a pivotal moment that has turned into a new era for cancer immunotherapy. On April 17, 2012, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia researchers for the first time treated a pediatric patient with a cellular therapy that used her own reprogrammed immune cells, called T cells, to attack her aggressive form of blood cancer.

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Aug 29 2017

CHOP Scientists Advance Hemophilia Research With Bayer Awards

For children with hemophilia, every new research advance is a step toward a life filled with more activity, freedom, and adventure. The genetic condition, which affects roughly one in 5,000 births, causes children to bleed and bruise more easily than others – meaning that a simple cut, scrape, or small surgery can result in uncontrollable and excessive bleeding. While hemophilia is a lifelong condition, breakthroughs in the laboratory are driving novel treatments, and thanks to recently announced grants from the Bayer Hemophilia Awards Program (BHAP), scientists at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia will be able to continue conducting even more investigations.

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Aug 4 2017

Got Skills? What it Takes to be a Learning Health System Researcher

learning-health-system_cropDon’t let those crisp, white lab coats fool you. While researchers share the ultimate goal of reaching new findings that can advance the best possible medical care, they aren’t all the same.

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Aug 1 2017

Can Electronic Alerts Help Identify Sepsis in Sick Children?

A two-step electronic alert system successfully reduced missed sepsis diagnoses in children by 76 percent. The new pediatric protocol, which incorporates the use of vital signs, risk factors, and a clinician’s judgment, shows promise as a sensitive and specific tool that can help pediatricians working in the emergency department (ED) save lives.

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Jul 18 2017

Do Researchers Need Standardized Dosing for Infant Anticancer Drug Trials?

Researchers from the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) have developed a new standardized dosing method for anticancer drugs in infants to use across all COG clinical trials. This unified method, based on dose banding and organized into tables for different drugs and dose levels, will address the limitations and variability that researchers can encounter in current methods.

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Jul 11 2017

How Peacekeeper Cells Prevent Autoimmune Disease: Q&A with The Oliver Lab

In the lab of Paula Oliver, PhD, associate professor of Pathology at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, a group of researchers led by Awo Layman, PhD; Guoping Deng, PhD; and Claire O’Leary, PhD, studied the influential events that transpire when, as Dr. Layman described it to us, a type of immune cell called a regulatory T cell suffers a “loss of identity.”

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