Advancing Pediatric Urology Through Research

Published on in Urology Update

Over the first half of 2020, members of the Division of Urology at CHOP were busy advancing pediatric urology through research activities ranging from clinical and epidemiology studies to basic science discoveries and innovative translational projects. 

The Societies for Pediatric Urology (SPU) 68th Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Despite the in-person portion of the annual SPU spring conference as part of the larger American Urological Association’s Annual Meeting being cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, parts of the meeting went forward as video presentations and streaming panels. CHOP urology faculty members were well represented and participated in six abstract presentations. In addition, three attending gave invited lectures:

  • Gregory Tasian, MD, gave a talk on the methodology of a national randomized controlled trial on renal stones
  • Jason Van Batavia, MD, participated in a panel/debate on management of ectopic upper pole duplicated ureters
  • Douglas Canning, MD, Division Chief, was a panelist for a discussion on voiding outcomes in patients with bladder exstrophy

Urology Care Foundation Awardees of Distinction

Each year, the Urology Care Foundation (the research branch of the American Urological Association) only gives out four Awards of Distinction among urologists across the entire nation to honor contributions to urologic research. Amazingly, for 2020, two of these awards were given to CHOP Division of Urology faculty members.

  • Thomas Kolon, MD, is the 2020 recipient of the John W. Duckett Jr., Pediatric Urology Research Excellence Award, which honors a “physician-scientist for their outstanding work in pediatric urology.”
  • Stephen Zderic, MD, is the 2020 recipient of the Urology Care Foundation Scholar Alumnus Award, which honors a former Urology Care Foundation Research Scholar who has “achieved a substantial body of impactful research and demonstrates an unwavering commitment to scholarship and academic leadership in the field.”

University of Pennsylvania I-Corps Program

Funded by the National Science Foundation, the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) I-Corps Program works with Penn faculty, staff, and students to test and validate startup ideas through Customer Discovery. Recently, Stephen Zderic, MD, and Jason Van Batavia, MD, were selected to participate in the spring session — a five-week program with weekly virtual didactic sessions, interactive presentations, and group feedback.

As part of the program, the CHOP Urology attendings interviewed potential customers to better understand pain points and inform their value proposition for an innovative urological device that was recently patented by CHOP and is the basis of a startup called UroGenie.

PKIDS Care Improvement Network

Gregory Tasian, MD, continues to lead the charge for understanding the causes behind pediatric kidney stones and optimal treatment choices. He is the lead Principal Investigator behind the Pediatric KIDney Stone (PKIDS) Care Improvement Network, which recently received more than $4 million in funding from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). This nationwide, multicentered prospective cohort study will determine the comparative effectiveness of three approaches to removing kidney stones and determine the impact of surgery on the lives of pediatric patients.  


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