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Research & Innovation | Overview

The Bone Health Program is committed to advancing our understanding of pediatric low bone density, abnormal skeletal growth, and developing effective treatments tailored to the unique needs of our patients.

Explore our recent research advancements aimed at improving pediatric bone health:

Genetics and Natural History of Multiple Fractures

  • Objective: This study seeks to unravel the genetic underpinnings behind why some children experience more frequent fractures. We are currently enrolling patients who have had three or more fractures during childhood or any spinal compression fractures, as well as those diagnosed with osteogenesis imperfecta.
  • Participation: The study involves genetic testing and surveys on pain and physical functioning, and no additional hospital visits are required. 
  • Contact: To learn more and determine if your family qualifies, please contact us at fracturestudy@childrens.harvard.edu.

DREAMS Health Study: Advancing Equity for Youth with Musculoskeletal Disability

  • Objective: The primary goal of this study is to delve deeper into the mental and sexual health needs of young people living with musculoskeletal disabilities. Broadly, we seek to improve awareness, support, and resources for those living with physical disability due to musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Participation: If you or someone you know is living with a disability and is 18 years or older, we invite you to participate in this study.
  • Contact: For more information or to determine your eligibility for participation, please reach out to us at dreamhealth@childrens.harvard.edu.

Skeletal Health and Bone Marrow Composition in Transgender Youth

  • Objective: This study explores the potential effects of GnRH medications on skeletal health for the first two years of medication use.
  • Participation: Participation involves a DXA scan, pQCT scan, MRI of the knee, and study surveys at a baseline time point (around the start of GnRH initiation), 12-month follow-up, and 24-month follow-up.
  • Contact: For more information, please email tgbonestudy@childrens.harvard.edu.

Skeletal Heath and Bone Marrow Composition in Newly Diagnosed Adolescents with Crohn's Disease

  • Objective: We will examine adolescents with newly diagnosed Crohn’s disease at baseline and one year later to evaluate the impact of Crohn’s disease inflammatory activity on bone marrow fat, bone mineral density, bone turnover markers, and to correlate with blood molecular and immune cell parameters.
  • Participation: In this longitudinal case-control study, participation includes a dual energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) scan; peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT) of the leg; magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the knee; and bloodwork, within three months of diagnosis and then about one year later.
  • Contact: To learn more and determine if you/your child qualifies, please email either crohnsbonehealthstudy@childrens.harvard.edu or rebecca.gordon@childrens.harvard.edu; or call us at 857-218-3647.