• Research News

    Julia S. Anixt, MD's head shot.Psychotropic medication use in children & teens with Down Syndrome
    “Providers must be more systematic in the screening, diagnosis and management of mental health conditions in children and teens with Down syndrome,” concludes Julia S. Anixt, MD, lead author of a study recently completed at Cincinnati Children’s. Researchers studied trends related to the prescription of stimulants, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and atypical antipsychotics (AAPs). Learn more.
    andreas-loepke-90Effects of Surgical Anesthesia in Young Children
    A study led by Andreas Loepke, MD, PhD and published in the journal Pediatrics found that children under age 4 who received general anesthesia for surgery risk diminished language comprehension, lower IQ and decreased gray matter density in posterior regions of the brain. Learn more.
    Martin-Lisa-90x120Parent-Reported Symptoms Gauge Features of EOE
    Cincinnati Children’s researchers recently identified that parent-reported responses to the Pediatric Eosinophilic Esophagitis Symptom Score (PEESS® v2.0) questionnaire correspond to clinical and biologic features of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). The study’s first author, Lisa Martin, PhD, reports, “Because eosinophilic esophagitis is a disease with multiple symptoms, the ability to capture patient and parent perceptions of these symptoms is a major unmet need.” Learn more.
    Froehlich-Tanya-90x120Study links exposure to a common pesticide with ADHD in boys
    Published in Environmental Health, a recent study found a link between exposure to pyrethroid pesticides and ADHD in children and young teens. Corresponding author Tanya Froehlich, MD states, “Given the growing use of pyrethroid pesticides and the perception that they may represent a safe alternative, our findings may be of considerable public health importance.” Learn more.
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    Using Excess Stress Can Kill Therapy Resistant Breast Cancer
    A study published in Science Signaling by Kakajan Komurov, PhD suggests that maxing out the inherently stressed nature of treatment-resistant breast cancer cells thwarts their adaptive ability to evolve genetic workarounds to treatment. Learn more.

    Andrew Beck, Md, MPH's head shot.Pharmacies’ role in reducing Asthma-related Illness
    A study recently published in Pediatircs finds that pharmacies in neighborhoods with high rates of asthma-related emergency-room use and hospitalization filled fewer asthma controller medications compared to asthma rescue medications. Lead author, Andrew Beck, MD, MPH states, “Tracking medication fills could highlight ways in which pharmacies could deliver proactive, as opposed to reactive, asthma care.” Learn more.
    Dawodu-Adekunle-90x120Vitamin D Deficiency Prevalent in Breastfeeding Arab Women and Infants
    A Cincinnati Children’s-led study concludes that breastfeeding Arab mother and infants have a very high prevalence of Vitamin D deficiency. The study’s lead author, Adekunle Dawodu, MBBS, points to Arab women’s traditional style of dress as a major factor, as it largely prevents exposure of the skin to sunlight. Learn more.
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    Bio-marker identified in hard-to-treat asthma patients
    Why do some asthma patients respond well to corticosteroids while others do not? A new study reveals that VNN-1 gene expression is required for corticosteroids to be effective during an asthma attack. Gurjit Khurana Hershey, MD, PhD and her research team discovered the revealing bio-marker and are using their findings to develop new treatments for hard-to-treat asthma cases. Read more.

    Sing Sing Way, MD, PhD's head shot.Study findings suggest possible treatments for stillbirth, prematurity
    Promising research focused on redirecting an expectant mother’s immune cells away from the fetus suggests new therapeutic strategies for preventing pregnancy complications, including prematurity and stillbirth. Senior author Sing Sing Way, MD, PhD hopes these findings – published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation – will spark a renewed interest in the biomedical community to establish the underlying causes of certain pregnancy complications and the development of new therapeutic approaches. Read more.
    Thomas Inge, Md, PhD's head shot.Teen-LABS findings highlight cardiovascular risks for severely overweight teens
    Cardiovascular risks for severely overweight teens are much higher than previously realized, according to an article published online in JAMA Pediatrics. A part of the ongoing Teen Longitudinal Assessment of Bariatric Surgery (Teen-LABS), the findings include increased risk of elevated blood pressure, unhealthy cholesterol and insulin resistance in severely overweight teenagers. Thomas Inge, MD, PhD, acts as Chair for the Teen-LABS study. Read more.
    Samir Shah, MD, MSCE's head shot.Oral antibiotics equally effective as IVs for bone infection treatment in kids
    Findings published online in the December 15th issue of JAMA Pediatrics report on a multi-dimensional study, co-led by Cincinnati Children’s. The study found that osteomyelitis treatment can be equally as effective through IV and oral antibiotics. According to study co-author Samir Shah, MD, MSCE, serious complications can be avoided by opting for oral antibiotics over IV treatment. Read more.
    research-brinkman-90ADHD linked with increased alcohol and tobacco use

    New research links ADHD and conduct disorder in young adolescents with increased alcohol and tobacco use.  William Brinkman, MD, was lead author in the study published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Read More.

    research-ware-90Successful Outcome in Sickle Cell Anemia Trial
    A sickle Cell Anemia Clinical Trial ended early as conclusive data shows that hydroxyurea therapy offers safe and effective disease management of sickle cell anemia (SCA) and reduces the risk of stroke. Russell E. Ware, MD, PhD, was principal investigator of the study. Read More. 
    research-trapnell-90New Approach for Lung Disease

    A new type of cell transplantation developed to treat mice mimicking a rare lung disease could one day be used to treat this and other human lung diseases caused by dysfunctional immune cells. The study was published online Oct. 1 by Nature. Bruce Trapnell, MD is senior author. Read More.

    research-rothenberg-90New Treatment Strategy for Mysterious Food Allergy
    New research published in Nature Genetics identifies a novel genetic and molecular pathway in the esophagus that causes eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). Marc E. Rothenberg, MD, was senior investigator. Read More.
    research-bezerra-90Steroids and Pediatric Liver Disease
    Treating infants with high doses of steroids fails to improve medical outcomes in the end-stage pediatric liver disease, according to a study published in the May 7, Journal of the American Medical Association. Jorge Bezerra, MD was principal investigator. Read More
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    Twin study provides cancer clues

    By studying the genomes of twin 3-year-old sisters, researchers have uncovered a molecular pathway involving the gene SETD2 that could lead to better treatments for aggressive leukemia. The study was published online Feb. 9 in Nature Genetics. Gang Huang, PhD, a researcher in the divisions of Pathology and Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology was a co-corresponding author. Read More.

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    Progress in gene therapy for Hurler syndrome
    In a mouse study, researchers have successfully used blood platelets and bone marrow cells to deliver potentially curative gene therapy to treat Hurler syndrome. The study appeared online Feb. 3 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). Dao Pan, PhD, a researcher in the Division of Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology, was corresponding author. Read More.

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    HPV vaccine does not change sexual behavior

    A new study published online Feb. 2 in Pediatrics finds no evidence that the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine leads to unsafe sexual behaviors among teenage girls and young women. Jessica Kahn, MD, a physician in the Division of Adolescent and Transition Medicine was senior author. Read More.

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    New test can predict death risk from septic shock

    A new test that measures five key biomarkers can quickly and accurately predict the risk of death in children with septic shock, according to a study published online Jan. 29 in PLOS ONE.  The multi-institutional study was led by Hector Wong, MD, Director, Division of Critical Care Medicine at Cincinnati Children’s and Christopher Lindsell, PhD, UC College of Medicine. Read More.

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    Stem cell breakthrough

    A basic signaling pathway known to play important roles in normal cell and cancer cell formation also plays an unexpected role as a molecular switch that controls the aging process of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), according to a study published online Oct. 20, 2013, in Nature. The study was led by  Hartmut Geiger, PhD, Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology. Read More.

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    Teen obesity risks
    Severely obese teens are four times more likely to have swollen legs with skin ulcers as adults and three times more likely to develop severe walking limitations and abnormal kidney function, according to a study published online Nov. 18, 2013, in Pediatrics by Thomas Inge, MD, PhD, and colleagues. Read More.

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    Antioxidant Treatment May Reduce NF1-Linked Behavioral Issues

    Treatment with antioxidants may help reduce behavioral issues linked to neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1) and an associated condition, Costello syndrome. Findings were posted Sept. 12 in Cell Reports. The study was led by Nancy Ratner, PhD, Division of Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology. Read More.

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    Regenerative medicine

    Controlling the protein RhoA could help fight a variety of blood and immune system disorders, according to a study published online Oct. 7 in the Journal of Experimental Medicine. Yi Zheng, PhD, director of Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology, was principal investigator. Read More.

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    Prostate cancer advance

    A study involving mouse models published Aug. 2, 2013, in the Journal of Biological Chemistry reports that depleting the FoxM1 protein in prostate epithelial cells inhibits tumor cell proliferation and metastasis. Tanya Kalin, MD, PhD, a physician-scientist in Pulmonary Biology was senior author. Read More.

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    Fighting resistant leukemia

    Findings posted online April 26, 2013, in Leukemia report that an experimental combination treatment was effective against T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) in mouse models and human cells in the lab. Fukun Guo, PhD, a researcher in Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology, is first author. Read More.

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    Insulin and breastfeeding

    RNA sequencing reveals in detail how insulin resistance can lead to insufficient breast milk production. The study, led by Laurie Nommsen-Rivers, PhD, at Cincinnati Children’s and scientists at the University of California Davis, was published in July 5, 2013, in PLOS ONE. The findings suggest a potential biomarker to predict which women may have difficulty breastfeeding. Read More. 

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    Drug reduces seizures

    Everolimus can dramatically reduce seizures in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), according to a study posted online June 24, 2013, in Annals of Neurology. The study was led by Darcy Krueger, MD, PhD, at Cincinnati Children’s in collaboration with a team at Texas Children’s Hospital. Read More.

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    New target for treating MDS

    Scientists at Cincinnati Children’s have successfully targeted a malfunctioning immune system enzyme to kill diseased cells from patients with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). The study, led by Daniel Starczynowski, PhD was published July 8, 2013, in Cancer Cell. Read More.

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    Traffic pollution and ADHD

    In a study published May 21, 2013 in Environmental Health Perspectives, a team led by Nicholas Newman, DO, MS, director of the Pediatric Environmental Health and Lead Clinic at Cincinnati Children’s, reported that children exposed to high levels of traffic-related air pollution (TRAP) during their first year of life were more likely to have “at risk” scores for hyperactivity by age 7. Read More.

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    Medical device risks

    The same modern medical devices that have helped extend and enhance life for so many children also can cause complications that have not been well-understood, according to a study led by Patrick Brady, MD, MSc, a physician in the Division of Hospital Medicine. Findings were posted online June 7, 2013, in the Journal of Hospital Medicine. Read More.

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    Anesthesia and the brain

    Beyond the known effects that surgical anesthesia can have on the developing brains of young children, new findings posted June 5 the Annals of Neurology suggest the threat may also apply to adult brains. The study was led by Andreas Loepke, MD, PhD, a physician and researcher in the Department of Anesthesiology. Read More.

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    14 more JIA genes
    An international team of researchers led by Cincinnati Children’s has confirmed 14 more genes linked to juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), bringing the total to 17. The study involved patient DNA samples from across the United States, Germany and United Kingdom, says Susan Thompson, PhD, a researcher in the Division of Rheumatology who was a leader in the project. Findings were published April 21, 2013, in Nature Genetics. Read More.

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    New biomarker for NEC
    Two distinct microbial imbalances in the digestive tract may serve as biomarkers to predict the onset of necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC), according to a study led by Ardythe Morrow, PhD. Findings were published April 16, 2013, in the journal Microbiome. Read More.

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    Alternative to bariatric surgery
    Manipulating bile acid levels may be enough to recreate the key effects of bariatric surgery without the need for an invasive procedure, according to a study led by Rohit Kohli, MBBS, MS, a member of the Division of Gastroenterology. Findings were published online April 16, 2013, in Endocrinology. Read More.

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    Bubble Boy Breakthrough
    For children with X-SCID, a new version of gene therapy shows renewed promise. A boy treated when he was 8 months old is doing well several months after receiving experimental therapy through a clinical trial at Cincinnati Children’s. Read More.

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    Targeting Cancer Stem Cells
    Scientists at UC and Cincinnati Children’s report that a new molecular pathway may offer a new way to kill leukemia cancer stem cells that survive traditional forms of treatment. Findings were published in June 2012 in the journal Blood.  Our researchers also are using new lines of “humanized” mice to explore the potential of microRNA inhibitors and small-molecule inhibitors as anti-cancer weapons. Read More.

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    Closer to Conquering HLH
    The 10-center Hybrid Immunotherapy for HLH (HIT-HLH) trial, led by Michael Jordan, MD, is the first US-based clinical trial to focus on this condition. Researchers at Cincinnati Children’s also are studying a promising antibody, a possible gene replacement therapy and targeted drug therapies to improve HLH treatment. Read More.

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    Light and Eye Development
    Even in the womb, the eye needs light to develop normally. This and other unexpected findings could change our understanding of how the retina develops, according to a study published online Jan. 16, 2013, in Nature. The paper was co-authored by  Richard Lang, PhD, a researcher in the Division of Pediatric Ophthalmology at Cincinnati Children’s and David Copenhagen, PhD, a scientist at UCSF. Read More.

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    Kidney Removal Unnecessary
    Thousands of people have had kidneys removed unnecessarily because doctors misdiagnose patients who actually have tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), according to a study published online Jan. 11, 2013, in Lancet. Proper diagnosis could have led to a medication that would have made surgery or kidney removal unnecessary, according to John Bissler, MD, a nephrologist at Cincinnati Children’s and lead author of the study. Read More.

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    Teen Girls Face Online Risks
    Thirty percent of teen girls report having offline meetings with strangers and semi-strangers they meet on the Internet, according to a study published online in Pediatrics.  The study, led by says Jennie Noll, PhD,  a psychologist in Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology at Cincinnati Children’s, shows the risk is further heightened for teen girls who have been victims of abuse or neglect. Read More.

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    Progress Against NF1 Tumors
    A preclinical study in mice successfully used targeted molecular therapy to block mostly untreatable nerve tumors caused by the genetic disorder Neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1).  The study was led by Nancy Ratner, PhD, program leader for the Cancer Biology and Neural Tumors Program in the Cancer and Blood Disorders Institute. Findings were published online Dec. 10, 2012, in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. Read More.

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    Smoking and Osteoporosis
    Teenage girls who smoke accumulate less bone during a critical growth period and carry a higher risk of developing osteoporosis later in life, according to research published Dec. 4, 2012, in the Journal of Adolescent Health. The study was led by Lorah Dorn, PhD, director of research in the Division of Adolescent MedicineRead More.

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    Gene Linked to Deafness
    A research team led by Cincinnati Children’s has discovered a genetic mutation responsible for deafness associated with Usher syndrome type 1. These findings offer a potential target for new therapies, says Zubair Ahmed, PhD, senior investigator. The study results were published online Sept. 30 in Nature Genetics. Read More.

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    Marijuana and Preeclampsia
    Marijuana consumption may increase risks of preeclampsia and other pregnancy complications, according to SK Dey,PhD, director, Division of Reproductive Sciences. Analysis of mouse models indicates that THC can affect placenta development. Findings appeared Sept. 14 in The Journal of Biological Chemistry. Read More.

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    ATV Safety
    Warning labels are not working. Tougher rider training and helmet laws are needed to reduce deaths among underaged All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) riders, according to Rebeccah Brown, MD. She presented new findings about ATV crashes Oct. 22 at American Academy of Pediatrics annual meeting in New Orleans. Read More.

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    How Epilepsy Seizures Begin
    Molecular disruptions in granule cells – located in the dentate gyrus region of the brain – caused brain seizures in mice similar to those seen in human temporal lobe epilepsy, according to a study led by Steven Danzer, PhD, a neuroscientist in the Department of Anesthesia. The findings appeared Sept. 19 in Neuron. Read More.

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    Rhosin Shows Promise
    A small-molecule-inhibiting drug dubbed “Rhosin” stopped breast cancer cells from metastasizing and promoted nerve cell growth in early laboratory cell tests. Although years away from market, Rhosin eventually could treat a variety of cancers and could promote spinal cord regeneration, says lead investigator  Yi Zheng, PhD, director of Experimental Hematology and Cancer Biology. Findings appeared June 21 in Chemistry & Biology. Read more.

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    Predicting Readmissions
    A geographic social risk index based on income, home values and the parents’ education levels can help hospitals predict which children with asthma are most likely to need readmission, according to research led by Andrew Beck, MD. Study results were posted online Oct. 18 in the American Journal of Public Health. Read More.

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    Vaccine for Preterm Birth
    The mechanisms involved in preventing a pregnant woman’s body from rejecting her baby as a foreign object eventually may lead to a new class of vaccines that could prevent preterm births and possibly other autoimmune diseases, according to Sing Sing Way, MD, PhD, a physician researcher in Infectious Diseases. Findings were published online Sept. 26 in the journal Nature.

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    Snoring and Behavior
    Persistent and loud snoring in young children can make preschool behavior problems worse, according  to Dean Beebe, PhD, director of the neuropsychology program at Cincinnati Children’s. Behaviors affected by snoring include hyperactivity, depression and inattention. Findings were published online Aug. 13 in Pediatrics. Read More.

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    HPV Vaccine Reach Grows
    The HPV vaccine does more than protect the vaccinated.  A study led by Jessica Kahn, MD, MPH, a physician in the division of Adolescent Medicine at Cincinnati Children’s, is the first to document that the vaccine also provides herd immunity. Findings were published online July 9 in Pediatrics.  Read More.

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    Detecting At-Risk Athletes
    A 9-minute modified echocardiogram is more effective than EKG at detecting athletes at risk of sudden cardiac death, according to a study led by Michelle Grenier, MD, a physician at the Cincinnati Children’s Heart Institute Findings were presented in July at the annual meeting of the American Society of Echocardiography. Read More.