VALHALLA, N.Y., Nov. 21, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The Burke-Blythedale Pediatric Neuroscience Research Collaboration has been awarded two National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants totaling $4.1 million. This unique partnership between a research institute (Burke Neurological Institute) and a children’s specialty hospital (Blythedale Children’s Hospital) is the first-of-its kind in New York, and one of only a few in the country.
“This Collaboration is a continuing commitment to bringing basic scientific research from the labs at Burke Neurological Institute to patient beds while developing a culture of research at Blythedale Children’s Hospital,” said Dr. Dianna Willis, Collaboration co-director. “There aren’t many hospitals investing in the future this way and I anticipate this is something other places will adopt as well to actually change the way that brain-injured kids are treated and assessed.”
Since its inception three years ago, the Collaboration received scientific community support through external validations, publications and now, two prestigious NIH grants to study and treat the developing nervous system in brain-injured children.
In June, the Collaboration’s Vision Recovery program, led by Dr. Glen Prusky, Collaboration co-director and director of Vision Recovery, began its five-year, $3.1 million NIH-funded study with the National Eye Institute to identify and grade cerebral visual impairment from eye movements in brain-injured children to predict a potential course of visual recovery. This technique was trialed in rodents and evolved into patented computer and eye-tracking applications for humans.
The second NIH grant received by the Collaboration was for the Motor Recovery program, led by Dr. Kathleen Friel. The team will measure movement and sensation in children with cerebral palsy (CP) or other neurological impairments to determine how sensation impacts movement. This research will help identify the root causes of upper limb impairments in children with CP and ultimately design customized therapeutic programs. The $1 million award funds a five-year study.
“The exciting aspect of this collaboration and these studies is the impact it potentially has on a much larger population of children with complex medical needs,” said Blythedale President & CEO Larry Levine. “The insights we are uncovering stand to benefit children across the world. We are so proud to partner with Burke on work that is truly transformative.”
Justin Barbo, Blythedale Children’s Hospital
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SOURCE Blythedale Children’s Hospital