Pediatric Critical Care Medicine: Research
Division research activities are numerous and diverse, with faculty members engaged in bench, translational, and clinical research projects. There are multiple areas of investigation that we are proud to highlight:
- Dr. Leticia Castillo’s lab is focused on defining the regulatory mechanisms of nutrient homeostasis under conditions of inflammation and critical illness, and how these processes affect nutrient requirements for nutritional balance and function maintenance.
- Cindy Darnell. M.D., focuses her research on the delineation and improvement of the effectiveness and mitigation of the undesirable effects of the sedative and analgesic medications commonly used in the care of patients in the intensive care unit.
- Archana Dhar, M.D., is the Principal Investigator (PI) of an IRB-approved retrospective study comparing the clinical characteristics of children admitted to the pediatric intensive care unit with seasonal influenza versus novel influenza H1N1.
- Joshua Koch, M.D. serves as the site primary investigator for the multi-center trial, Therapeutic Hypothermia After Pediatric Cardiac Arrest (THAPCA). This trial is funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and began enrollment on September 1, 2009. He is also primary investigator for the project, Prospective Analysis of Regional Cerebral Perfusion Using Head Ultrasound and Multi-Source-Detector Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) Imaging.
- Dr. Peter Luckett’s current research interests include clinical trials in pediatric critical care. In 2002 he was an initial organizing member of the Pediatric Acute Lung Injury and Sepsis Investigators (PALISI) clinical trials group, which recently completed a collaboration with members of the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome Network (ARDSnet) as part of the NIH Roadmap contract mechanism entitled “Reengineering Clinical Research in Critical Care.”
- Darryl Miles, M.D., works to understand the pathophysiology unique to childhood brain injury and to investigate the mechanisms of traumatic brain injury and neural self-repair. He hopes to contribute to the development of novel therapeutic strategies, ultimately improving the neurocognitive outcome of pediatric acquired brain injury.
- During lung formation, alterations in vessel growth contribute to dysfunctional lung development. The research of Margaret Schwarz, M.D., focuses on the contributions that the vasculature brings to functional lung development. In order to better examine this concept, focus has been placed on the individual vessel types, as well as their ability to influence the distal lung cells to exchange oxygen.
- Drs. Darryl Miles, Joshua Koch, Lakshmi Raman, and Pam Okada, from Pediatric Emergency Medicine, conduct research focused on brain injury. This group participates in three NIH multi-center hypothermia trials investigating the neurologic effect of lowering core body temperature in children with traumatic brain injury (Cool Kids Trial), cardiac arrest (THAPCA), or neonates placed on ECMO for hypoxic respiratory failure.