Understanding the science of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is a primary goal of the NICHD. Since its establishment, the NICHD has led and supported research and activities aimed at understanding SIDS and reducing the risk for SIDS. Short descriptions of this research are included below.
Much of the Institute's research on SIDS is conducted through the Pregnancy and Perinatology Branch (PPB). Its efforts have included and still include studies on the causes and etiology of SIDS, ranging from basic research with animal models to more applied methods involving responses to environmental risk factors with the goal of developing tools to identify and protect high- risk infants; research on risk factors for SIDS, especially among certain portions of the U.S. population; and research to improve outreach designed to educate parents and caregivers about ways to reduce SIDS risk, especially among those populations with a higher incidence of SIDS.
For a more detailed description of the Branch's SIDS research, see the PPB Report to the NACHHD Council (2008), pages 25 through 32.
Recent findings from Branch-supported research on SIDS include, but are not limited to, the following:
To achieve its goals related to SIDS, the NICHD supports and participates in a variety of other activities. Some of these activities are managed through the components listed above; others are part of NIH-wide or collaborative efforts in which the NICHD participates. Some of these are listed below:
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