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Research at Shriners Children's Philadelphia

Thanks to the dedication of our physicians and researchers, the dream that scientific breakthroughs will give doctors the tools and medicines to cure disease is becoming reality.

Anyone who has known a child born with a congenital disorder, paralyzed in an accident, or challenged by a complex medical condition knows that hope and healing are inseparable. At Shriners Children's Philadelphia, our physicians are working on a number of different research projects which include collaborations with industry and academic partners, all committed to uncovering new ways to heal children with complex medical needs.

Research programs at Shriners Children’s Philadelphia are designed to help give your child access to the most innovative treatment options available for their condition.

The research department at Shriners Children's Philadelphia is lead by a collaborative team with includes our Chief of Staff, Scott Kozin, M.D.; Chief of Surgery, Amer Samdani, M.D.; Director of Clinical Research, Solomon Praveen Samuel, D. Eng; and Director of Basic Science & Pediatric Research Center, George Smith, Ph.D..

Our physicians and researchers are actively engaged in ongoing research and are continually developing new and innovative ways to treat and care for children. The research areas we're involved in currently include:

The Shriners Children's Philadelphia research program is an integral part of the system-wide Shriners Children's research program, driving to find cures and treatments that allow us to provide amazing care to children everywhere.

Orthopedic Research

Orthopedic conditions can cause mobility issues that challenge a child's ability to be active and independent. We understand how important physical activity is in your child's life, which is why our team of researchers is dedicated to developing innovative treatments for:

Spine Research

Our pediatric spine surgeons study ways to improve spine care, allowing them to use the most advanced techniques when treating your child. This team participates in national and international spine research projects which focus on improving treatment outcomes and are currently investigating new approaches to:

  • Treatment intervention
  • Surgical and non-surgical patient outcomes
  • Innovative treatment options, such as vertebral body tethering (VBT), a possible alternative to spinal fusion surgery for scoliosis patients who meet specific criteria.


Sports Medicine Research

Driven in part by an overall increase in sports injuries among children, many of our Shriners Children's locations introduced their own sports medicine programs.

In order to stimulate collaboration throughout our healthcare system and strengthen our presence in pediatric sports medicine, Corinna Franklin, M.D., of Shriners Children’s Philadelphia, led the way to create the Shriners Sports Consortium. Funded by a Shriners Children’s development grant and a Shriners Children’s and Georgia Tech seed grant, the goal of this team is to begin the process of unifying the health care system’s sports medicine and motion analysis programs.

Projects that the Shriners Sports Consortium is currently focused on include:

Rare Childhood Disorder Research

Our specialists treat some of the rarest pediatric diseases in the world. They are continually conducting research to help find new ways to improve the quality of care that we provide to patients with these conditions. Some of the conditions that specialists at Shriners Children's Philadelphia are actively engaged in research on include:

Genomics Research

Shriners Children’s Philadelphia participates in a system-wide genomics program as part of our Genomics Institute. The goal of this program is to build a genetics biobank that allows clinicians and scientists to make discoveries that enable them to develop new and innovative therapies for conditions treated at Shriners Children's.

Funding and Support for our Research Programs

Our research is made possible through funding and grants from:

  • Shriners Clinical Research Grants
  • Shriners Basic Science
  • Shriners Children’s & Georgia Tech Seed Grants
  • Other nonprofit foundations

Funding from our generous donors provides new hope and opportunities for children with cerebral palsy, arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC), brachial plexus birth palsy, spinal cord injuries and other pediatric conditions.

Research Committed to Helping Children and Their Families

The Shriners Children's Philadelphia team of doctors and scientists, are devoted to researching new ways to treat complex pediatric medical conditions. This team is committed to finding treatments to help children live healthy, independent lives and reach their full potential.

Two smiling research members

Leaders in Spinal Cord Injury Research

Our team of doctors and scientists work tirelessly to incorporate the latest in technology to help patients with complex spinal cord injuries. Through this collaboration, our team participates in national and international spine research projects which focus on improving treatment for both surgical and non-surgical patient outcomes.

Patient on Therastride machine

Shriners Sports Consortium Program

The Shriners Consortium for Outcomes, Research, and Education in Sports (SCORES) team encompasses researchers, physical therapists and pediatric orthopedic surgeons from across our healthcare system. This team uses their unique vantage point to study data collected from our motion analysis centers and statistics from patient cases to help evaluate and treat pediatric sports injuries.

Patient with therapist in motion analysis center

We Understand the Unique Medical Needs of Children

We provide vital, pioneering treatment from birth to age 18. Here, children have the opportunity to be evaluated and treated by doctors recognized as the best by their peers.