Navigation Links
Researchers Aim to Prevent Global Prematurity and Stillbirths

Seattle Children's receives $1 million Gates Foundation grant for research and international summit

SEATTLE, Feb. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Seattle Children's Hospital Research Institute announced today that it has received a $1 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to study ways to prevent global prematurity and stillbirth. Prematurity claims the lives of over 1 million newborn babies worldwide each year. It is the leading cause of infant mortality in the United States with over 10,000 babies dying each year. Over 3 million babies are stillborn each year worldwide, and it is believed that many of these deaths are caused by the same factors that cause prematurity. The grant will be used to review current published literature and identify opportunities for new areas of research to reduce the incidence of prematurity and stillbirths worldwide. Seattle Children's is spearheading the study and will host an international summit in Seattle in 2009 to bring together the world's foremost experts in this field.

"Prematurity and stillbirth contribute to a significant burden of disease worldwide, and there is an urgent need to learn more about the causes and develop effective preventive measures," said Dan Kraushaar, ScD, MPH, Deputy Director for Integrated Health Solutions Development at the Gates Foundation. "According to The Lancet, there are millions of stillbirths and countless premature births every year in developing countries, and the problem may be under-counted due to poorly functioning vital events registration systems in these countries. In addition, maternal mortality rates can be very high following stillbirths."

"In the U.S., neonatal intensive care units see the devastating effect of premature births every day," said Thomas N. Hansen, MD, CEO at Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center and a co-investigator. "Parents the world over need to know the medical community is coming together to address this universal global issue. Children's is pleased to join ranks with other groundbreaking researchers - together we can all contribute to improving infant and maternal health throughout the developing world and right here at home."

"We believe it is our responsibility to help solve this global problem and have committed the resources to form a new office at Children's to specifically address prematurity and stillbirths," continued Hansen. "The office will be directed by Dr. Craig Rubens, professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and will be based at the hospital and closely linked to our Research Institute."

Over 500,000 babies are born prematurely in the U.S. each year. In 2004, 1 of 8 babies was born prematurely and between 1994 and 2004 the rate of infants born prematurely in the U.S. climbed nearly 14 percent, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Prematurity rates are growing in Latin America as well.

"Bringing together the research literature and the world's leading stillbirth and prematurity scientists will allow us to build a critical research agenda for the future. This is an area in medicine that has yet to receive the funding levels and attention it needs," said the grant's principal investigator Craig Rubens, MD, PhD, director, Office for Prevention of Prematurity and Stillbirths at Children's. "With the help of the Gates Foundation we are establishing important partnerships with global organizations, such as UNICEF and the March of Dimes, to strengthen our efforts through collaboration. It's our goal to develop an internationally focused, comprehensive research program to fully understand what causes premature births, including those that result in stillbirths, and how to prevent them on a global level."

Rubens is developing an international scientific advisory committee made up of experts representing major health centers and organizations, who have a strong history of leadership and contribution to maternal, neonatal and child health issues within low, middle or high income countries. This committee will advise the researchers on their findings and guide development of the program content for the international summit.

Researchers include:

-- Fernando Barros - Investigator, Universidade Catolica de Pelotas; Pelotas, Brazil

-- Zulfiqar Bhutta - Investigator, Aga Khan University; Karachi, Pakistan

-- Mike Gravett - Investigator, University of Washington School of Medicine; Seattle, WA, USA

-- Tom Hansen - CEO of Children's Hospital and Co-PI of the Program; Seattle, WA, USA

-- Joy Lawn - Investigator, Saving Newborn Lives/Save the Children-US; Cape Town, South Africa

-- Craig Rubens - Principle Investigator, Children's Hospital and Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine; Seattle, WA, USA

-- Cynthia Stanton - Investigator, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA

-- Cesar Victora - Investigator, University of Pelotas; Pelotas, Brazil

The objectives of the Office for Prevention of Prematurity and Stillbirth are to identify mechanisms, causes and risk factors for prematurity and stillbirths that will lead to the development of new diagnostic, preventive and therapeutic interventions around the globe.

For more information please visit:

About Seattle Children's Hospital Research Institute, Seattle, Wash.

At the forefront of pediatric research, the Seattle Children's Hospital Research Institute at Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center in Seattle conducts research under nine major centers and is internationally recognized for its discoveries in cancer, genetics, health services, immunology, pathology, infectious disease and vaccines. Consistently ranked as one of the best children's hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Children's serves as the pediatric referral center for Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho. Children's has been delivering superior patient care for 100 years, including advancing new discoveries and treatments in pediatric research, and serving as a primary teaching, clinical and research site for the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine. For more information about the Institute visit

Media Contact:

Jennifer Seymour

Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center


SOURCE Seattle Children?s Hospital Research Institute
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. UH researchers study Hispanic childrens activities, views on places to play
2. Researchers discover new way to reverse poor circulation and heal wounds
3. Bacterial toxin closes gate on immune response, Penn researchers discover
4. UD researchers discover technique for repairing gene defect that causes spinal muscular atrophy
5. Veterinary researchers study poultry virus as human cancer treatment
6. UD researchers discover promising technique for repairing gene that causes spinal muscular atrophy
7. Researchers at BMC find disability does not necessarily follow disease in living to old age
8. Oregon researchers discover a mechanism leading to cleft palate
9. Penn childhood obesity researchers panelists at AAAS Town Hall Event
10. Researchers at Pulmonary Associates to study airway bypass procedure for severe emphysema
11. European blood researchers receive award to pursue research opportunities in US
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... For the first time, ... Two Organizations, One Beat ” campaign. The partnership between the two groups began in ... in MAP International’s cause. , MAP International was founded in 1954 and is an ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 25, 2015 , ... Dental professionals who would like to become more proficient ... attend Dr. Mark Iacobelli’s Advanced Implant Mentoring (AIM) CE course. Courses will be held ... the co-founders of Advanced Implant Mentoring (AIM), Dr. Iacobelli and Dr. D’Orazio are proud ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... The McHenry ... a recent successful appellate decision obtained by Attorneys Francisco J. Botto and Alex C. ... v. Illinois Workers’ Compensation Comm’n, 2015 IL App (2d) 130884WC. , According to court ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... SCOTTSDALE, AZ) - Today, ... specializing in both surgical and non-surgical treatments, announced the expansion of his private ... Plastic Surgery. , Highly trained and nationally recognized for his natural approach, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... In an ongoing Clinical ... Center (RMC) in Chicago, IL, UV Angel is evaluating the efficacy of its product ... intensive care units (totaling 30 beds) from May 2014 through October 2015 at a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... and Markets ( ) has announced the addition of ... - Rise in Cardiac Disorders and Growing Awareness among People ... Boston scientific and others. ... others. --> The market is dominated by ... scientific and others. Asia ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ... "2016 Future Horizons and Growth Strategies ... Market: Supplier Shares, Country Segment Forecasts, Competitive ... offering. --> ) has ... Future Horizons and Growth Strategies in the ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 26, 2015 ) ... Administration of High Viscosity Drugs" report to ... announced the addition of the "Self Administration ... offering. --> Research and Markets ( ... "Self Administration of High Viscosity Drugs" ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: