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news News Thursday, October 10, 2019 Thursday, October 10, 2019 12:36 PM - Thursday, October 10, 2019 12:36 PM

NIH grant funds Brittle Bone Disorders Consortium

NIH grant funds Brittle Bone Disorders Consortium

For the past five years, Shriners Hospitals for Children — Chicago has been part of a multimillion-dollar research project funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The Brittle Bone Disorders Consortium of the Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network involves Shriners Hospitals for Children locations in Chicago, Montreal and Tampa, along with medical institutions such as Baylor University, the Kennedy Krieger Institute and the Hospital for Special Surgery. The goal of the consortium is to advance the study and treatment of osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), a brittle bone disorder. Patients with OI may experience dozens of fractures while growing up and require specialized care.

The NIH recently awarded a $7 million grant to fund the consortium for five more years. “We are enthusiastic about the opportunity to learn more about this rare disorder and share information to improve care,” Peter Smith, M.D., principal investigator and orthopaedic surgeon at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Chicago, said.

According to Baylor College of Medicine, which is the lead site of the 14-center consortium, “The BBDC aims to better understand all genetic forms of OI, expand treatment options and train the next generation of physicians and scientists to study and treat this disorder.” The consortium also partners with the Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation.

In the last five years the consortium has helped enroll families in a national registry to enhance research of OI. The group is researching new therapies to help treat the cause of brittle bone disease along with additional treatments to improve the quality of life for patients.