PROVIDENCE – Dr. James F. Padbury, pediatrician-in-chief and chief of neonatal/perinatal medicine at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island and the Oh-Zopfi professor of pediatrics and perinatal research at The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, is one of five scientists whose work toward discovering the causes of and reducing the rates of prematurity will be supported by March of Dimes Prematurity Research Initiative grants in 2014. The PRI grants, which total nearly $27 million over 10 years, are one of several March of Dimes grant programs available to researchers.
“Prevention is the way to save babies from death and disability caused by preterm birth,” said Betsy Akin, Rhode Island March of Dimes director. “Research is the key that will provide new insights into the many unknown causes of preterm labor, and help doctors recognize the women and babies most at risk.”
Preterm birth has a strong genetic basis. With prior support from the March of Dimes, Padbury’s laboratory at Women & Infants has been studying the genetic basis of preterm birth for the past five years. This new, $400,000, three-year prematurity research initiative program grant will enable Padbury and his colleagues to continue their work in bioinformatics and targeted sequencing in preterm birth.