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The Department of Pediatrics faculty conducts cutting-edge research across the entire breadth of pediatrics.

Our facilities, talented leadership, increased funding and new programs are working together to ensure the Department continues to make discoveries that will improve children’s health and will train the future pediatric investigators who will discover tomorrow’s treatments and cures.

Learn more about our research by clicking on the links below:

History: Research Discoveries and Milestones

The Department of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado and Children's Hospital Colorado has a long and proud history of major research accomplishments which include the following pediatric research discoveries and milestones:

  • Performing the first pediatric liver transplant in the world (1963)
  • First description of the medical consequences of child abuse (The Battered Child Syndrome) (early 1960s)
  • Participation in clinical trials leading to the licensure of new pediatric vaccines, including Haemophilus influenza and meningococcus (1970s)
  • The description of toxic shock syndrome (TSS) (1978)
  • The first statewide newborn screening program for cystic fibrosis in the U.S. (1983)
  • Discovering the effects of Zinc and Vitamin E nutritional deficiencies in infants and children (1983)
  • Description of Kawasaki Syndrome (1976) in the U.S. and clinical trials, leading to its successful treatment with IVIG (1990s)
  • Groundbreaking research in the treatment of hemophilia and blood-clotting disorders (1980s and 1990s)
  • Methods to save newborns with severe lung disorders, including the treatment of pediatric pulmonary hypertension by using a non-invasive method of inhaled nitric oxide (1992)
  • Pioneering pediatric AIDS research, as one of a handful of AIDS clinical trial groups in U.S. (1993)
  • The Cystic Fibrosis Center participated in early research and drug trials for Kalydeco, the first drug that treats the underlying causes of CF (2006)
  • The development and licensure of a new shingles vaccine (2006)

Strategic Plan

As a part of our strategic plan for research the Department of Pediatrics in collaboration with Children’s Hospital Colorado (CHCO) hired a Chief Research Officer (CRO) and Director of the Children’s Hospital Colorado (CHCO) Research Institute (RI), Dr. Frederick J. Suchy, who has bridged research efforts between the various departments within the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus and Children’s Hospital Colorado (CHCO).

Together we have developed new strengths in a number of focus areas through funding and aggressive recruiting.

The involvement and financial commitment of both the Department of Pediatrics and Children’s Hospital Colorado towards the success of the Department’s strategic research plan has been, and will continue to be, key to our successes.

Anschutz Medical Campus

The Anschutz Medical Campus – which is the home to the University of Colorado Hospital, Children’s Hospital Colorado, and the University of Colorado School of Medicine – features new, state-of-the-art research laboratories and educational tools that encourage new collaborations and interdisciplinary research teams. These facilities create opportunities for the Department of Pediatrics to expand on its reputation as one of the top academic pediatric departments in the nation. 

Research Institute

The Children’s Hospital Colorado Research Institute is a leader in developing basic and clinical knowledge that drives our supply of new medicines, devices, diagnostic approaches and other health care innovations.

As the umbrella organization for all research at Children’s Colorado, Children's Hospital Colorado Research Institute provides resources, oversight, funding, and expertise to new research programs at Children’s Colorado.

Our emphasis areas are:

Support for the Research Institute is aimed at funding promising physician scientists and pioneering their new ideas. To this end, the Research Institute is working collaboratively in:

  • conducting innovative basic laboratory investigation
  • performing patient-oriented research to translate discoveries at the laboratory bench into the improved clinical care for children
  • investigating the outcomes of treatments and methods of diagnosis to provide the best patient care
  • developing the next generation of clinical and basic pediatric investigators
  • engaging our community in studies to assure the health and well-being of all children.

The Research Institute sponsors new research initiatives in all disciplines found at Children’s Colorado (including nursing and pathology). Their following programs are:

  • Children’s Clinical Research Organization (CCRO): Supports Children's Colorado faculty and staff who are involved in clinical trials evaluating state-of-the-art drugs and devices for treating and preventing childhood diseases.
  • Children’s Outcomes Research Program (COR): In association with the Colorado Health Outcomes Program (COHO), COR fosters major community translational research efforts in pediatrics. COR is known nationally for health services research in the provision of preventive pediatric care and also provides methodological and analytical support for many pediatric faculty engaged in other areas of community translational research. Currently, COR is collaborating
    with COHO on community initiatives that extend over the lifespan, including projects targeting prevention of obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes, and practice reorganization to improve quality of preventive health care delivery.
  • Experimental Therapeutics Program (ETP): The goal of the ETP within the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders is to promote the development, scientific support, and clinical translation of promising therapies for the treatment of children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer and related disorders. The ETP at Children’s is the only comprehensive basic and translational research-based program that can provide direct access to and application of these resources to the clinical care of pediatric, adolescent, and young adult cancer patients in an eleven-state
    region. Because of strong academic affiliations locally and nationally, the ETP at Children’s can provide access to new treatments and treatment modalities only available at a few highly select academic institutions across the country.
  • Biostatistical Support: Biostatistical collaboration is available to researchers to help them mine and analyze data; this is especially helpful to researchers with pilot studies.
  • Bioinformatics Support: Database support is provided to help researchers manage complex datasets and biological information. 

To learn more, visit the Children's Hospital Colorado Research Institute website.

Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute

The Colorado Clinical Translational Sciences Institute (CCTSI) brings together health organizations across Colorado with a goal to accelerate the translation of research discoveries into improved patient care and public health.

The mission of the CCTSI is to transform the current clinical and translational research and training efforts of all schools at the University of Colorado and affiliated institutions into an innovative, interdisciplinary, integrated, collaborative campus and hospital-wide academic home for clinical and translational sciences, scientists and trainees.

The CCTSI was established in 2008 with a $76 million Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the NIH. 

The CCTSI encourages and facilitates research and provides support through six major programs:

  • Discovery Translation
  • Community Translation
  • Education, Training and Career Development
  • Translational Informatics
  • Novel Methods and Technologies
  • Child and Maternal Health Research

As part of the CTSA grant, the former Adult General Clinical Research Center (GCRC) at University of Colorado Hospital and the Children's Hospital Colorado CTRC – which were already being supported by the NIH – are now part of the Institute and have been transformed into a new network of Clinical Translational Research Centers (CTRCs).  

To learn more, visit the Colorado Clinical Translational Sciences Institute website.

Grants and Grants Management

With our Grants Program Director and Associate Grants Program Director, and five grant specialists positions, we have created an infrastructure that supports our growing research portfolio, as well as addresses the complex issues that are involved with effective grants management. 

Grants Program Director Jeanette Leeser is responsible for the overall program management and focus on strategic research needs for the future, as well as, the advancement of collaborative efforts. 

Associate Grants Program Director Peggy Roddy​ is responsible for the day-today oversight and management of the team of grant specialists. 

The five grant specialists are assigned to work with specific sections/principle investigators within the Department of Pediatrics.

Research Resources