Boston Childrens Hospital and Brigham and Womens Hospital Launch The Boston Center for Endometriosis

April 18, 2012

Boston, Mass., – Boston Children’s Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospitaltoday announced the inception of The Boston Center for Endometriosis, a joint undertaking to discover causes, promote prevention, and develop new treatments and cures for the disease of endometriosis. 

The Center is the first in the world of its kind and will serve as the premier diagnostic, treatment, research, and educational resource for the disease throughout a woman’s lifespan, from adolescence through adulthood.

“The Boston Center for Endometriosis is unique in its features,” says Marc R. Laufer, MD, Chief of Gynecology at Boston Children's Hospital,and a gynecologic surgeon in the Center for Infertility and Reproductive Surgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital. “Currently, no one in the world has a teen-through-adulthood endometriosis program that can ensure both seamless clinical care for patients while conducting research to fuel scientific progress.”

The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation today announced a $3 million leadership commitment to Boston Children’s Hospital to launch the Center and support its research efforts.

The Foundation’s gift will fund the Center’s innovative database and biorepository and the Endometriosis Research Awards program to encourage scientists to participate in the search for a cure. Half of the gift is a challenge grant that is contingent on raising another $1.5 million in research funds.

“The Center, through integration of clinical and scientific disciplines will bring together leaders in the study of endometriosis to advance our knowledge across the life-course through innovations in genetics, lifestyle, and environment to promote long-term health,” says Stacey Missmer, ScD, Scientific Director of The Center and researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

"Through our Foundation, the Marriott family has tried to make a difference in the world by supporting causes and organizations that share our ideals. Under Dr. Laufer’s leadership, we believe The Boston Center for Endometriosis will improve the future for girls and young women suffering with this devastating disease,” says Richard E. Marriott, Chairman, The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation. “We hope that by matching gifts dollar-for-dollar, we will encourage individuals, families and organizations that care about this cause to join us in supporting the Center and accelerating discoveries that ultimately will lead to a cure.”

Endometriosis is a painful, chronic disease that affects at least 6.3 million women and girls in the U.S. The condition occurs when tissue similar to the inside lining of the uterus is found outside of its normal location.  Clinically, it is vital to diagnose and treat patients as early as possible to limit disease progression, decrease lifelong pain and preserve fertility. The high toll of suffering brings an equally grievous US financial burden: $22 billion a year.

Meghan Weber
Children's Hospital Boston

About Boston Children’s Hospital  

Boston Children’s Hospital is home to the world’s largest research enterprise based at a pediatric medical center, where its discoveries have benefited both children and adults since 1869. More than 1,100 scientists, including nine members of the National Academy of Sciences, 11 members of the Institute of Medicine and nine members of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute comprise Boston Children’s research community. Founded as a 20-bed hospital for children, Boston Children’s today is a 395 bed comprehensive center for pediatric and adolescent health care grounded in the values of excellence in patient care and sensitivity to the complex needs and diversity of children and families. Boston Children’s also is the primary pediatric teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School.

About Brigham and Women's Hospital

Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) is a 793-bed nonprofit teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School and a founding member of Partners HealthCare, an integrated health care delivery network. BWH is the home of the Carl J. and Ruth Shapiro Cardiovascular Center, the most advanced center of its kind. BWH is committed to excellence in patient care with expertise in virtually every specialty of medicine and surgery. The BWH medical preeminence dates back to 1832, and today that rich history in clinical care is coupled with its national leadership in quality improvement and patient safety initiatives and its dedication to educating and training the next generation of health care professionals. Through investigation and discovery conducted at its Biomedical Research Institute (BRI), , BWH is an international leader in basic, clinical and translational research on human diseases, involving more than 900 physician-investigators and renowned biomedical scientists and faculty supported by more than $537 M in funding. BWH is also home to major landmark epidemiologic population studies, including the Nurses' and Physicians' Health Studies and the Women's Health Initiative. For more information about BWH, please

About The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation

The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation was established in 1965 with the purpose of giving back to the community. Under the current direction of J.W. Marriott, Jr. and Richard E. Marriott, the Marriott Foundation is dedicated to helping youth secure a promising future, especially through education on the secondary and higher education levels, mentoring and youth leadership programs. Equally important are organizations that help provide relief from hunger and disasters, support people with disabilities and create gainful employment opportunities for vulnerable youth and adults.