Making discoveries that matter

In the Department of Pediatrics, we’ve maintained a long history of innovative clinical and basic science research, thanks to our abundance of grant support and our exceptionally productive and dedicated researchers.

We emphasize the importance of research to all faculty and this focus on research is demonstrated by our high number of published papers and presentations.

Areas of strength

Within the department, you’ll find an unusual combination of basic science, clinical researchers and clinician scientists. Our largest research groups are:

The Atlantic Research Centre: The majority of the centre’s research focuses on the synthesis and degradation of membrane lipids like phospholipids and cholesterol. Emphasis is placed on the relationship between lipid metabolism and human disease, including cancer, neurodegenerative, heart and infectious disease.

The Autism Research Centre (ARC): Researchers at the ARC are working to advance our understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), promote earlier detection of ASD, and develop better supports for individuals with ASD and their families. They are accomplishing this through developmental investigations, including longitudinal studies, and the implementation of system-, provider- and patient/family-level interventions.

The Canadian Center for Vaccinology (CCfV): An integrated, collaborative, interdisciplinary vaccine research team, CCfV is committed to developing, implementing and evaluating vaccine technologies and vaccines for infectious diseases that have a significant impact on Canadian and global health and training experts in these critical and evolving fields.

Maritime Intestinal Research Alliance (MIRA): Together with an interdisciplinary team at the IWK Health Centre, collaborators at Dalhousie, nationally and internationally,  researchers focus in the field of pediatric gastroenterology. Our clinical research includes the development and validation of patient-reported outcome measures, as well as improving treatment options for children with inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis) through nutrition and clinical drug trials. Our translation research program studies the role of the gut microbiome in various GI disorders, with a particular focus on the impact of microbial metabolites on the intestinal immune system.

The Perinatal Epidemiology Research Unit (PERU): With a team of leading researchers and access to one of the world’s longest running, most extensive perinatal databases and other comprehensive data sets, the unit provides insight into pressing issues in women’s and children’s health. These include the growing problems of obesity and exposures to environmental toxins.

Technoscience and Regulation Research Unit: 
Researchers apply a variety of interdisciplinary approaches including actor network theory to local and globally-situated case studies to track the relationships of human and non-human entities in the regulation of emerging therapeutic and food products, such as GMOs, pharmaceuticals, biologics and vaccines.