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NICHD Contributions to Society

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Research conducted and funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) has helped save lives, improve wellbeing, and reduce societal costs associated with illness and disability. The following sections provide examples of groundbreaking scientific findings made possible by NICHD. (Printable Version of This Information PDF - 312 KB)

  • Creating Vaccines for Infectious Childhood Diseases

  • Developing and Expanding Newborn Screening

  • Identifying Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

  • Pioneering the First Home Pregnancy Test

  • Improving Care and Survival of Premature Infants

  • Protecting Infants During Sleep

  • Transforming the Study of Human Fertility

  • Preventing and Correcting Neural Tube Defects (NTDs)

  • Isolating the Causes of Genetic Disorders

  • Nearly Eliminating Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV

Citations

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  1. https://www.nih.gov/sites/default/files/about-nih/impact/childhood-hib-vaccines-case-study.pdf 
  2. Mathews TJ, Macdorman MF, Thoma ME. National Vital Statistics Reports Infant Mortality Statistics From the 2013 Period Linked Birth / Infant Death Data Set. Natl Vital Stat Reports. 2015;64(9). 
  3. Speer CP, Sweet DG, Halliday HL.  Surfactant therapy: past, present and future.  Early Hum Dev. 2013 Jun;89 Suppl 1:S22-4. doi: 10.1016/S0378-3782(13)70008-2. 
  4. Meis PJ, Klebanoff M, Thom E, Dombrowski MP, Sibai B, Moawad AH, Spong CY, Hauth JC, Miodovnik M, Varner MW, Leveno KJ, Caritis SN, Iams JD, Wapner RJ, Conway D, O'Sullivan MJ, Carpenter M, Mercer B, Ramin SM, Thorp JM, Peaceman AM, Gabbe S; National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Maternal-Fetal Medicine Units Network.  Prevention of recurrent preterm delivery by 17 alpha-hydroxyprogesterone caproate.  N Engl J Med. 2003 Jun 12;348(24):2379-85. 
  5. https://www.nichd.nih.gov/cochrane_data/robertsd_01/robertsd_01.html 
  6. Morris BH, Oh W, Tyson JE, Stevenson DK, Phelps DL, O'Shea TM, McDavid GE, Perritt RL, Van Meurs KP, Vohr BR, Grisby C, Yao Q, Pedroza C, Das A, Poole WK, Carlo WA, Duara S, Laptook AR, Salhab WA, Shankaran S, Poindexter BB, Fanaroff AA, Walsh MC, Rasmussen MR, Stoll BJ, Cotten CM, Donovan EF, Ehrenkranz RA, Guillet R, Higgins RD; NICHD Neonatal Research Network.  Aggressive vs. conservative phototherapy for infants with extremely low birth weight.  N Engl J Med. 2008 Oct 30;359(18):1885-96. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa0803024. 
  7. Rouse DJ, Hirtz DG, Thom E, Varner MW, Spong CY, Mercer BM, Iams JD, Wapner RJ, Sorokin Y, Alexander JM, Harper M, Thorp JM Jr, Ramin SM, Malone FD, Carpenter M, Miodovnik M, Moawad A, O'Sullivan MJ, Peaceman AM, Hankins GD, Langer O, Caritis SN, Roberts JM; Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD Maternal-Fetal Medicine Units Network. A randomized, controlled trial of magnesium sulfate for the prevention of cerebral palsy.  N Engl J Med. 2008 Aug 28;359(9):895-905. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa0801187.
  8. Trachtenberg FL, Haas EA, Kinney HC, Stanley C, Krous HF.  Risk factor changes for sudden infant death syndrome after initiation of Back-to-Sleep campaign.  Pediatrics. 2012 Apr;129(4):630-8. doi: 10.1542/peds.2011-1419. 
  9. https://www.nih.gov/about-nih/what-we-do/nih-almanac/nobel-laureates
  10. Adzick NS, Thom EA, Spong CY, Brock JW 3rd, Burrows PK, Johnson MP, Howell LJ, Farrell JA, Dabrowiak ME, Sutton LN, Gupta N, Tulipan NB, D'Alton ME, Farmer DL; MOMS Investigators. A randomized trial of prenatal versus postnatal repair of myelomeningocele. N Engl J Med. 2011 Mar 17;364(11):993-1004.
  11. Tuomala RE (1), Shapiro DE, Mofenson LM, Bryson Y, Culnane M, Hughes MD, O'Sullivan MJ, Scott G, Stek AM, Wara D, Bulterys M. Antiretroviral therapy during pregnancy and the risk of an adverse outcome. N Engl J Med. 2002 Jun 13;346(24):1863-70. 
  12. Cooper ER (1), Charurat M, Mofenson L, Hanson IC, Pitt J, Diaz C, Hayani K, Handelsman E, Smeriglio V, Hoff R, Blattner W; Women and Infants' Transmission Study Group. Combination antiretroviral strategies for the treatment of pregnant HIV-1-infected women and prevention of perinatal HIV-1 transmission. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2002 Apr 15;29(5):484-94.


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