Research efforts within the Division of Critical Care Medicine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center span from basic to translational, clinical and improvement science. Our major areas of focus cover the fundamental syndromes and physiological derangements that are often encountered in critically ill children: sepsis, hemorrhagic shock, ischemia-reperfusion injury, asthma, lung injury, kidney injury and pulmonary hypertension.  

We address several of these areas with a multifaceted approach. For example, we study sepsis at the genomic level using microarray-based expression analysis. The data generated from these translational studies subsequently direct molecular-level studies: of key signal transduction pathways relevant to inflammation and immunity, of candidate sepsis genes and pathways in animal models, and sepsis biomarker discovery and validation. In addition, the division is engaged in clinical studies focused on sepsis therapy and quality improvement.  

The PPARg pathway is another major focus of the division that is being addressed using a multifaceted approach. Molecular- and animal-based studies in the division have identified PPARg as a key negative modulator of inflammation and ischemic injury in animal models of myocardial ischemia, hemorrhagic shock and sepsis. These studies may soon lead to the Phase 1 trial of a PPARg agonist in pediatric sepsis. 

The division is also the lead center for a multi-institutional clinical drug trial investigating the administration of intravenous citrulline to children with pulmonary hypertension following cardiopulmonary bypass. The genesis of this clinical trial involves the identification of genetic polymorphisms that impact the nitric oxide pathway.

Our researchers work closely with clinicians and care teams that provide critical care services at Cincinnati Children’s.