Children's Hospital Colorado

Research at the Breathing Institute

The Breathing Institute at Children's Hospital Colorado is one of the world's premier programs for treating children with breathing disorders. We are internationally known for our team's clinical and research leadership roles in caring for children with conditions including asthma, bronchopulmonary dysplasia (BPD), cystic fibrosis (CF), pulmonary hypertension (PH), sleep disorders, primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD), interstitial and diffuse lung disease, and for associated basic science research.

We offer a top pediatric pulmonology fellowship program with the University of Colorado School of Medicine. We're located near the University of Colorado Hospital and the University of Colorado School of Medicine on the Anschutz Medical Campus. This partnership enables us to work with some of the best minds in academic research.

Research article

There's currently no technology to measure the structure and function of the lungs, particularly in kids. At Children's Colorado, electrical impedance tomography (EIT) will change that.

Clinical trial

Researchers at Children’s Hospital Colorado and the University of Colorado want to learn more about the risk of asthma in children with African ancestry.

Children and teenagers with and without asthma

Our pulmonary advancements

We're focused on transforming care and finding cures through innovation. Some of our team's advancements include:

  • Our physicians have led the way in Cystic Fibrosis (CF) research. Frank Accurso, MD, was the head of the national clinical trial that led to FDA approval of Kalydeco, the first drug that treats the underlying causes of CF.
  • We're using novel preliminary protein markers for rare lung disease diagnosis and for CF correlation of structural lung injury and lung function decline
  • The innovative approach in our Ventilator Care Program has resulted in improved communication and continuity of care, and has led to a significant increase in survival rates for these fragile infants.
  • Our team developed an authentic 3-D bronchoscopy training tool to improve procedural competency. In one test of the model on trainees with zero scope experience, 92% could identify all lobes of the bronchi successfully after less than two hours of training.

In 2017, the Breathing Institute had 65 active awards combined, which included awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), foundation and industry awards. These awards provided more than 15 million dollars of funding for our pulmonary research.

"Our team works tirelessly to get our patients home safely with their families. Innovation and research help us better care for technology-dependent children at home."

Christopher Baker, MD

Director, Ventilator Care Program

Learn about Dr. Baker's research

What our pulmonary research means for kids

Our mission in the Breathing Institute is to be a national leader in improving patient outcomes, finding new treatments and developing cures for children with breathing and sleep disorders. Our focus centers on five key components:

  • Pursuing basic scientific studies that are crucial to understanding breathing and pulmonary vascular disorders in children.
  • Finding new opportunities for personalized medicine in translational and clinical research.
  • Developing novel strategies and interdisciplinary teams for the management, prevention and cure of childhood lung diseases.
  • Careful tracking of clinical outcomes for treatment effectiveness and patient safety.
  • Training the next generation of clinicians and clinician-scientists for advancing the care of children with lung disease.
  • Promoting healthier communities through our school and home-based asthma education and medication adherence programs, including the Just Keep Breathing program and the Step Up Asthma program.
  • We've developed a new outpatient nasal esophagoscopy with esophageal biopsy to replace higher-risk procedures for patients.

Learn more about the Breathing Institute.

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