The Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development shortlisted 53 finalists from around the world from more than 400 entries. Only 22 were awarded grants for their bold, new ideas to save the lives of mothers and newborns in developing countries. The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital was one of them. The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital was one of four institutions in the competition to be awarded transition-to-scale grants (up to $2 million for 4 years). Eighteen projects were nominated to receive seed funding (up to $250,000 for 2 years).
This project is a multidisciplinary team effort led by Dr. Irina Buhimschi, director of the Center for Perinatal Research at The Research Institute and Professor of Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. “We developed a method of diagnosing and predicting preeclampsia that is innovative, low cost, sustainable and scalable,” said Dr. Buhimschi. The paper-based urine test enables early diagnosis by revealing misfolded proteins through Congo Red—a readily available dye used worldwide in textiles, wood pulp and paper.
Other collaborators include Dr. Catalin Buhimschi (Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center), Dr. Hemant Tagare and Dr. Michael Choma (Yale University School of Medicine), Dr. Robert Pattinson and Dr. Pedro Mulder (University of Pretoria, South Africa), Dr. Thomas Easterling (University of Washington, Seattle), Dr. Hillary Bracken and Dr. Beverly Winikoff (Gynuity Health Projects).
TheSaving Lives at Birth partnership, launched in 2011, includes the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Government of Norway, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada (funded by the Government of Canada), and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID). The grand challenge is a global call for groundbreaking, scalable solutions to prevent infant and maternal deaths around the time of birth.