Cystic Fibrosis Research and Development Program Awarded $2 Million Grant From Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

A team of researchers at Nationwide Children's Hospital and The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Medicine recently was awarded a $2 million grant over four years to continue development of the Cure CF Columbus Research and Development Program (C3 RDP).

August 2, 2019

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A team of researchers at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and The Ohio State University (OSU) College of Medicine recently was awarded a $2 million grant over four years to continue development of the Cure CF Columbus Research and Development Program (C3 RDP).

The program aims to study the relationship between immune system function and cystic fibrosis to develop treatments that will improve clinical outcomes for children and adults with CF. Approximately 30,000 people in the United States have CF, and the majority often catch life-threatening infections caused by a variety of viruses and bacteria. Despite improving therapies and a significant daily treatment burden, the majority of patients with CF die due to the persistent lung infection, with a median survival age of 44 years.

“We know that the immune system responds to infections differently in children and adults with CF,” said Karen McCoy, MD, chief of the Pulmonary Medicine at Nationwide Children’s and professor of Pediatrics at OSU College of Medicine. “Our studies are dedicated to bridging the gap between what we learn in the lab and what we see in the clinic. This additional grant funding serves as recognition and validation of the important work we’re doing.”

Ohio State and Nationwide Children’s teamed up in 2007 to establish a multi-disciplinary translational research team of microbiologists, biochemists, immunologists, cell biologists, pathologists and CF pulmonary clinicians. Since then, the team of 29 clinical and basic science investigators have been building a body of research geared toward changing outcomes for patients in the clinic. Research projects include, understanding aspects of the adaptive and innate immune systems and how immune dysfunctions related to CF lead to infection with microorganisms. The C3 RDP, through a robust collaboration and focus, will enhance quality and length of life for children and adults with CF in the area.

The C3 RDP is co-directed by Dr. McCoy, and Daniel Wozniak, PhD, professor of Microbiology and Microbial Infection and Immunity at OSU College of Medicine.

“To fully understand the complexity of CF pathophysiology, there needs to be a better understanding of how cell types other than airway epithelial cells contribute to the disease,” said Dr. Wozniak. “C3 RDP is positioned to fundamentally change the current understanding of CF pathophysiology, particularly those aspects that are related to immune dysfunction in CF and its impact on infection.”

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About Nationwide Children's Hospital

Named to the Top 10 Honor Roll on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019-20 list of “Best Children’s Hospitals,” Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of America’s largest not-for-profit freestanding pediatric health care systems providing wellness, preventive, diagnostic, treatment and rehabilitative care for infants, children and adolescents, as well as adult patients with congenital disease. Nationwide Children’s has a staff of more than 13,000 providing state-of-the-art pediatric care during more than 1.5 million patient visits annually. As home to the Department of Pediatrics of The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Nationwide Children’s physicians train the next generation of pediatricians and pediatric specialists. The Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital is one of the Top 10 National Institutes of Health-funded freestanding pediatric research facilities. More information is available at NationwideChildrens.org.