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Research is an integral part of Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston. Our mission is to conduct research that will ultimately improve the timely and complete recovery of children with burns by enhancing and developing new therapeutic approaches for use during and following hospitalization.

Shriners Hospitals for Children — Boston is a leading research facility in biotechnical engineering, as well as other fields, housing approximately 30,000 square feet of research space and employing some 100 researchers. One-quarter of our research staff is on faculty at Harvard Medical School and their investigations are made possible by combinations of funding from The National Institutes of Health, The National Science Foundation, The Department of Defense, and philanthropic and industrial sources, as well as by Shriners Hospitals for Children’s internal research funding.

Highly advanced research equipment, such as a positron emission tomography (PET) machine, provides researchers with enhanced capabilities to explore metabolic disorders, psychological disorders post-injury and significant advances in the targeting of drugs to specific sites.

Studies now recruiting participants

Our researchers are renowned worldwide as leaders in their fields, including:

In 2017, our team published 118 original papers in prestigious journals, including:

  • Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • Science Reports
  • Nature Biotechnology
  • Nature Biomedical Engineering

In the past decade, our researchers have authored nearly 10 percent of the papers presented at the American Burn Association’s annual meeting.

Recently published research papers include:

  • Whole blood stabilization for the microfluidic isolation and molecular characterization of circulating tumor cells. Wong KHK, Tessier SN, Miyamoto DT, Miller KL, Bookstaver LD, Carey TR, Stannard CJ, Thapar V, Tai EC, Vo KD, Emmons ES, Pleskow HM, Sandlin RD, Sequist LV, Ting DT, Haber DA, Maheswaran S, Stott SL, Toner M. . Nat Commun. 2017 Nov 23;8(1):1733. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-01705-y. PubMed PMID: 29170510.
  • Collective and individual migration following the epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Wong IY, Javaid S, Wong EA, Perk S, Haber DA, Toner M, Irimia D. Nat Mater. 2014 Nov;13(11):1063-71. doi: 10.1038/nmat4062. Epub 2014 Aug 17. PubMed PMID: 25129619; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4209198.
  • AR Expression in Breast Cancer CTCs Associates with Bone Metastases.Aceto N, Bardia A, Wittner BS, Donaldson MC, O'Keefe R, Engstrom A, Bersani F, Zheng Y, Comaills V, Niederhoffer K, Zhu H, MacKenzie O, Shioda T, Sgroi D, Kapur R, Ting DT, Moy B, Ramaswamy S, Toner M, Haber DA, Maheswaran S. Mol Cancer Res. 2018 Feb 16.  pii: molcanres.0480.2017. doi: 10.1158/1541-7786.MCR-17-0480. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 29453314.
  • Molecular signatures of circulating melanoma cells for monitoring early response to immune checkpoint therapy. Hong X, Sullivan RJ, Kalinich M, Kwan TT, Giobbie-Hurder A, Pan S, LiCausi JA, Milner JD, Nieman LT, Wittner BS, Ho U, Chen T, Kapur R, Lawrence DP, Flaherty KT, Sequist LV, Ramaswamy S, Miyamoto DT, Lawrence M, Toner M, Isselbacher KJ, Maheswaran S, Haber DA. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A.2018 Feb 16. pii: 201719264. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1719264115. [Epub ahead of print]  PubMed PMID: 29453278.
  • An RNA-Based Digital Circulating Tumor Cell Signature Is Predictive of Drug Response and Early Dissemination in Prostate Cancer. Miyamoto DT, Lee RJ, Kalinich M, LiCausi JA, Zheng Y, Chen T, Milner JD, Emmons E, Ho U, Broderick K, Silva E, Javaid S, Kwan TT, Hong X, Dahl DM, McGovern FJ, Efstathiou JA, Smith MR, Sequist LV, Kapur R, Wu CL, Stott SL, Ting  DT, Giobbie-Hurder A, Toner M, Maheswaran S, Haber DA. Cancer Discov. 2018 Jan 4. doi: 10.1158/2159-8290.CD-16-1406. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 29301747.
  • Clusters of Circulating Tumor Cells: a Biophysical and Technological Perspective . Au SH, Edd J, Haber DA, Maheswaran S, Stott SL, Toner M. Curr Opin Biomed Eng. 2017 Sep;3:13-19. doi:  0.1016/j.cobme.2017.08.001. Epub 2017 Aug 10.  PubMed PMID: 29226271; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5720146.