A Year of Breakthroughs, Collaborations and Funding

Hendricks 220x130In 2014, Seattle Children’s Research Institute achieved scientific developments, received tremendous extramural funding and cultivated new collaborations designed to accelerate research.

Our investigators experienced the best funding year yet: our total funding for research increased 21% from $76 million in fiscal year 2013 to nearly $92 million in fiscal year 2014. This is a tremendous accomplishment in a time where competition for federal grants has increased steadily as available federal funding has decreased.

Our team contributed major findings to medical research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy, Kawasaki disease, cancer immunotherapy, gene therapy, childhood depression, HIV and epilepsy.

To accelerate our research, Seattle Children’s joined seven other children’s hospitals to form the National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network (PCORnet) – an initiative of the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. PCORnet is pooling medical data from 11 healthcare organizations and 18 patient-powered networks with the goal of speeding up medical research and improving patient care.

We also started an Office of Science-Industry Partnerships to form collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Our goal with these partnerships is to accelerate the testing and development of new treatments for children. The most recent example is the Alliance for Children’s Therapeutics, a research collaboration with Kineta, Inc. that focuses on children and teens with autoimmune diseases.

In addition, the institute hosted three conferences in 2014 to promote the sharing of current research and stimulating conversation among resAearchers, parents, providers, child health advocates and educators. The two-day-long 10th annual pediatric bioethics conference (titled “New Opportunities, New Challenges: Exploring the Ethical Boundaries of Pediatric Research) highlighted issues of informed consent for research study participants. Other conferences focused on new therapies that are providing hope for those suffering from mitochondrial disease and on using social media to improve health, catalyze research and empower communities.

We are proud of the dedicated faculty and staff who all contributed to another milestone year for research at Seattle Children’s. We hope you will enjoy reading about these and other accomplishments of our outstanding faculty and divisions in this year’s Academic Annual Report.

Dr. Jim Hendricks

President, Seattle Children's Research Institute