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GEN News Highlights : Oct 25, 2011

New England Research Institutes Scores $45M to Support the Pediatric Heart Network

NIH money will span five years and covers work at nine clinical centers and NERI.

New England Research Institutes (NERI) received a $45 million grant from NIH to continue its work on the Pediatric Heart Network (PHN). PHN is a multicenter clinical research network that was started in 2001 to study congenital and acquired heart diseases that occur in childhood.

NERI is a privately held CRO that provides clinical trial solutions and registry services to pharmaceutical, biotechnology, biomaterial, and medical device companies. Its latest grant provides five more years of funding to nine clinical centers and NERI as the data coordinating center. Clinical research studies are being conducted in children and young adults with heart defects and other heart diseases.

Since 2001, reportedly nine studies have been conducted at children's hospitals around the U.S. and Canada. The PHN also provides training in clinical research to new investigators and is the clinical cornerstone of the NHLBI's comprehensive Bench to Bassinet (B2B) Program in pediatric cardiovascular translational research.

In addition to the PHN, B2B Program includes the Pediatric Cardiac Genomic Consortium conducting human genetic studies and the Cardiovascular Development Consortium focusing on basic research and animal models. NERI also serves as the coordinating center for the B2B program. The federal funding to NERI for its work on the PHN and on B2B reportedly totals $87 million over the next five years.