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GAPPS In the News

Newborn Death Rate Drops in US
LiveScience, Nov. 19, 2014

The death rate of U.S. newborns during the first week of life has decreased by 8 percent in recent years, but the rate of stillbirths late in pregnancy has held steady, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Until recently, preterm births in the United States had been increasing, said Dr. Eve Lackritz, deputy director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth at Seattle Children's Hospital.
 

We don’t know how to prevent the new leading killer of children
Humanosphere, Nov. 18, 2014

A still little-known global problem just garnered a dubious honor. Preterm birth, babies born too early, is now the leading killer of children around the world. We may now know what kills the most children, but doctors are largely unable to predict whether or not a pregnant mother will give birth too early. “If you stood 100 women up in a room and asked me to pick who would have a preterm episode, I couldn’t tell you,” said Dr. Craig Rubens, executive director of the Seattle Children’s Hospital-based Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS).


Premature birth leading cause of death in kids under 5
Q13 Fox News, Nov. 17, 2014

GAPPS Executive Director Dr. Craig Rubens discusses preterm birth as the leading cause of death for all children under 5, and what research needs to be done to learn how to prevent it. 


Study: Preterm Birth Complications Leading Cause of Death for Young Children
Voice of America, Nov. 17, 2014

Complications from preterm births now outrank all other causes of death for young children. Some $250 million worth of intensive research is getting underway through four major initiatives: the Global Coalition to Advance Preterm Birth Research; the March of Dimes; the University of California at San Francisco’s Preterm Birth Initiative; and the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth.
 

Preterm Birth: Forging the Path to Prevention
Huffington Post, Nov. 17, 2014

GAPPS Deputy Director Dr. Eve Lackritz writes: "Tackling the scientific complexities of preterm birth will require the same vision, commitment and direction dedicated to the other leading causes of childhood mortality. The global public health community has taken the challenge head-on." 
 

Preterm Birth: The Next Great Frontier in Global Health
Healthy Newborn Network, Nov. 13, 2014

GAPPS Deputy Director Dr. Eve Lackritz blogs about her trip to Bangladesh to help set up a new research site as part of the Preventing Preterm Birth initiative: "We have come to help support the work of icddr,b to address the next frontier – the one area of child survival that has seen the most limited gains: the relentless burden of death of newborns. We arrive to help support the development of research studies of pregnant women, to establish ways to monitor women throughout their pregnancies, and start to unravel the complex and elusive systems that regulate pregnancy and cause preterm birth."


“We’re Number One” is No Reason to be Proud
Impatient Optimists, Nov. 13, 2014

The Global Coalition to Advance Preterm birth Research (GCAPR) is introduced by GAPPS Deputy Director Dr. Eve Lackritz. Sixteen organizations from around the world have signed on as members of the organization, expressing their desire to increase collaboration, efficiency, and funding of preterm birth research.


New scientific review reveals huge gaps in understanding preterm birth
Medical Xpress, Nov. 12, 2014

Preterm birth is now the leading cause of death for children under 5 worldwide, and a new scientific paper reveals a startling lack of knowledge about what causes it and how to prevent it. "There are not enough resources dedicated to researching the complex problem of preterm birth and its prevention," said lead author Craig Rubens, MD, PhD, executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an initiative of Seattle Children's.
 

VCU project looks at role of the microbiome in preterm birth and neonatal health
VCU News, Sept. 10, 2014

The Integrative Human Microbiome Project Research Consortium is collecting multi-omic data about the human microbiome, which contains the billions of microbes that live in or on the human body. "Our objective is to identify the microbial components that contribute to problems in pregnancy and preterm birth,” said Gregory Buck, Ph.D. Women participants are being recruited from VCU’s women’s clinics and hospitals, and from the GAPPS Repository of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth at Seattle Children’s Hospital.


Specimens on the Move
Advance Healthcare Network, Sept. 4, 2014

Robust systems are the underlying theme for sending/receiving success at Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS) Repository, Seattle Children's Hospital. Donald Chaffin is lab manager at this biobank of pregnancy and newborn specimens from four hospitals in the U.S. Because all specimens are sent by their own collection sites, an extremely refined process is integrated throughout.


Health institutions tackle high rate of preterm birth
News Medical, Aug. 14, 2014

The Global Coalition to Advance Preterm birth Research (GCAPR) is a partnership initiated by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), the March of Dimes Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as well as the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, an initiative of Seattle Children's. A total of 16 institutions are now members of the Coalition, which will advance needed research into the field of preterm birth.


Training Physicians for Empathy
Health Leaders Media, Aug. 8, 2014

Improving Clinical Management of Stillbirth is an educational session sponsored by the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS) and the University of Washington. The program was created to give residents a better perspective of what parents go through during a traumatizing medical event.


Frontline Health Workers Return on Investment for Newborns
Frontline Health Workers Coalition, July 24, 2014

Hundreds of thousands of frontline health workers in areas of high newborn mortality around the world have received training in basic newborn resuscitation and are available when and where babies are born to provide life-saving care. There is even more we can accomplish with what we already know, and a new report is laying the groundwork for us to get there.


Why R&D matters for maternal and child health
Global Health Technologies Coalition, June 4, 2014

At GAPPS, we envision a scenario where instead of treating infants born prematurely or laying to rest nearly 3 million stillborn babies every year, we could instead identify issues in utero and develop therapies to prevent preterm birth, stillbirth, and other pregnancy complications before they occur.
 

Mysterious Stillbirths Baffle Doctors, Anguish Parents
ABC News, Dec. 4, 2013

"For the most part, we really don't understand what the triggers are that put a particular baby at more risk," said Dr. Craig Rubens, executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, an initiative of Seattle Children's Hospital. "There needs to be more research. We need to understand why babies are dying and find new ways to prevent it from happening in the first place."
 

Casting light on problems preemies and their families face
Ottawa Citizen, Nov. 15, 2013

The rate of prematurity in Canada was 7.78 per cent in 2010, and it has risen in recent decades. And, according to the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, there is a large disparity between the costs of preterm births and research dollars dedicated to preventing them or reducing complications.


U.S. preterm birth rate falls again but remains high
USA Today, Nov. 1, 2013

The percentage of babies born prematurely in the United States fell for the sixth straight year, but the problem remains more common than in most other industrialized nations. Making more progress, in the USA and around the world, will mean learning more about why so many babies are born too soon, says Craig Rubens, executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, based at Seattle Children's Hospital.
 

Stillbirth Haunts American Families More Than You Might Think
Huffington Post, Oct. 29, 2013

New mothers are not supposed to leave the hospital with empty arms. To arrive in labor and depart in mourning is to upend the way the world is supposed to be. "Born In Silence" is the title of the illuminating video by the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, which Upworthy is featuring today. Stillbirth visits an American family once every 21 minutes, GAPPS reports, and this video tells a handful of those stories.


Researchers hope to predict premature births with at-home test
KOMO News, Oct. 28, 2013

A device as simple as a home pregnancy test could soon be used to tell expecting mothers around the world if they are at risk of delivering their baby early. With a $1.4 million grant from Seattle Children’sGlobal Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, they will try to identify which vaginal bacterial infections are associated with preterm births and develop a test to identify those bacteria among pregnant women.


UW doctor developing at-home test for healthy babies
KIRO / MyNorthwest.com, Oct. 24, 2013

Dr. Kristina Adams Waldorf is a practicing Obstetrician and Associate Professor at the University of Washington. She's part of a team that wants to design an easy way to identify women at risk for having a preterm birth. Dr. Waldorf and her team are being given a $1.4 million grant by GAPPS, the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth.
 

VCU receives NIH grant to examine how vaginal microbes influence pregnancy in women
VCU News, Sept. 9, 2013

Virginia Commonwealth University has received a federal grant to study how microorganisms found in the vagina influence health and disease in women and their babies during pregnancy, labor and birth. The Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an initiative of Seattle Children’s, will assist the VCU team in recruitment of participants in this project. Craig E. Rubens, M.D., Ph.D., executive director of GAPPS, will lead the Seattle-based work.
 

Preemies: Loving and Nurturing the Tiniest Tots
ParentMap, May 3, 2013

Nearly 9,000 babies are born preterm in Washington state, says Dr. Craig Rubens, cofounder and executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS). Rubens encourages expectant mothers to ask questions and talk to their doctor about their potential risk factors — which can include smoking, stress and a previous preterm birth.
 

Case Western Reserve University professor wins grant for preterm prevention work
Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 23, 2013

Mesiano's research proposal stood out, said Dr. Eve Lackritz, senior program officer for GAPPS and the Preventing Preterm Birth initiative, because it sought to get at the crux of the mechanics of progesterone -- how and why it works, and what about it eventually triggers delivery.


Born in silence: Parents draw attention to stillborn babies
KOMO News, January 30, 2013

GAPPS created the video "Born in Silence" with Amanda and Brent Spraker and other parents of stillborn children to draw more attention to the issue; support grieving parents and encourage research that could prevent future stillbirths.
 

World Prematurity Day: 5 Ways to Reduce Preterm Births
TIME, November 16, 2012

“This is not just happening in the developing world,” says Dr. Craig Rubens, executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an initiative of Seattle Children’s Hospital, and a study author. “It’s also a huge problem in the developed world. The U.S. has one of the highest rates of prematurity in the world. Getting people and funders and policymakers to understand that is a huge burden.”
 

Infant deaths: Searching for answers in Mississippi
CNN, November 13, 2012

Poverty, low socioeconomic background and low education contribute to high preterm birth rates, said Dr. Eve Lackritz, senior program officer for the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth. Lackritz was once the branch chief for the CDC's maternal and infant health division.
 

Strategic Alliance Could Reduce Burden of Preterm Birth
HealthDay News, November 9, 2012

A strategic alliance, including researchers, funders, and key stakeholders in the fields of pregnancy, childbirth, and early life, will help alleviate the lack of consensus among researchers about how to prevent the adverse outcomes of pregnancy, according to research published in the November issue of the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology.  
 

Dr. Craig Rubens Appointed Chair of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC)
MicrobeWorld, November 6, 2012

Craig E. Rubens, MD, PhD, has been named Chair of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC), marking the first time a pediatric infectious disease specialist has been appointed to the position. ICAAC is the world's premier meeting on infectious diseases and antimicrobial agents, organized by the American Society for Microbiology (ASM).  
 

U of A doctor heads team hoping to prevent pre-term births
Edmonton Journal, November 4, 2012

Dr. David Olson, a medical researcher at the University of Alberta, heads an international team that has received $1 million to develop a drug to prevent preterm births. The money comes from the Preventing Preterm Birth Initiative, which is run by the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth at Seattle Children’s.


Filling the Knowledge Vacuum
Impatient Optimists, October 15, 2012

The human body is so intricate and elaborate that it takes teamwork among specialists at many levels to address complex health problems. As the second-leading cause of death for children under 5 around the world, preterm birth is a critical issue that has suffered from a lack of coordinated research efforts.
 

Yakima women helping doctors find causes of preterm delivery
KIMA TV, October 13, 2012

The number of women in Yakima County who go into premature labor is higher than the state average. Doctors don't know why. The Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth is trying to find what causes early births. 


A Library Of Samples From Pregnant Women To Help Disease Research
Fast Company, August 6, 2012

Does what happens to babies in the womb have a profound effect on the rest of their lives? A new comprehensive repository of data and samples from pregnant women looks to answer that question, and more.


Gates CEO Raikes brings global health focus to life sciences conference
Puget Sound Business Journal, July 11, 2012

In the Puget Sound region, the nonprofit global health and development sector is irrevocably intertwined with the biotechnology and medical device industry. At the WBBA conference, attendees had the opportunity to hear from Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an effort that has a specific Global Action Agenda focused on serving people in the developing world.


Healthy Birth Critical to Child Survival
Huffington Post, June 9, 2012

Caring for newborns and young children is only half the battle. Safer and healthier pregnancies will put every child in a better position to live a long and healthy life. That's why in addition to increasing the delivery of new healthcare technologies, it is equally important that we study what happens during pregnancy.
 

Long-Term Effects of Premature Birth
New Day Northwest, May 30, 2012

Dr. Craig Rubens, head of Seattle Children's Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), discusses the increasing rates of premature birth and long-term health effects. Tiny Footprints Guild member and mother of premature twins, Jennifer Sinconis, shares about her personal experience.


Shining A Light on the Global Preterm Birth Crisis
Impatient Optimists, May 2, 2012

Premature birth happens every day—frequently with devastating consequences—and yet we know very little about the causes or how to prevent it. I was one of the broad array of experts who contributed to the recent report Born Too Soon: The Global Action Report on Preterm Birth, which featured the first-ever country-level estimates of preterm birth, and the statistics paint a grim picture.


The Cost of Premature Birth: For One U.S. Family, It Was More than $2 Million
TIME, May 2, 2012

A new report released Wednesday finds that 15 million babies worldwide are born prematurely each year. Implementing every known method of preventing preterm birth would only prevent 8% of these early deliveries, according to Craig Rubens, executive director of GAPPS.
 

Seattle Children’s Sets Up Rare Biobank to Study Premature Birth
Xconomy, March 14, 2012

Money may be the key fuel that drives biomedical research, but even if you’ve got money, it’s hard to get very far without good tissue samples. Now a group at Seattle Children’s Hospital aims to tackle that problem by setting up an unusual biobank of specimens, open to scientists all over the world, which could become a gold mine for discoveries about premature birth and newborn health.
 

Pregnant women may help researchers find answer to prematurity
KING 5 News, Jan. 31, 2012

You expect the arrival of a newborn to be a precious time. For too many mothers the anticipation is shattered by unexpected preterm birth. Dr. Rubens is Executive Director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, or GAPPS. He said better nutrition, prenatal care, and limiting infections can make a difference. But there is much more to learn. His research team believes the GAPPS repository of tissue samples they are collecting from pregnant women will yield clues.


A Big First Step for Tiny Babies
Reuters AlertNet, Nov. 17, 2011

Preterm birth is now the leading cause of newborn death around the world and takes the lives of more infants than HIV, tuberculosis and malaria combined. It is encouraging that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation recently announced Grand Challenges: Preventing Preterm Birth. The program, stewarded by the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an initiative of Seattle Children’s, is aimed at discovering new interventions and solutions to prevent premature labor and birth.


Heroic Mother Speaks Out
ABC News Million Moms Challenge, Nov. 10, 2011

I didn’t realize how perfectly my first pregnancy and delivery had gone until I almost died giving birth to my second child. Instead of another “seamless” pregnancy, I suffered complications at 31 weeks.  As a result, my pregnancy ended way too soon – cut short by an emergency Caesarean section. I share my story through my blog and by participating in the Tiny Footprints Guild, which supports the important work GAPPS does.


Gates Foundation awards $20M for premature birth research
Puget Sound Business Journal, Nov. 7, 2011

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is awarding $20 million to Seattle Children’s Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS) initiative. The money will go toward the Preventing Preterm Birth initiative, which will focus on finding new interventions to prevent premature birth and stillbirth by limiting infection and improving nutrition.


Gates Foundation pledges $20 million to stop premature births
KOMO News, Nov. 7, 2011

Queen Anne’s Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is sending $20 million to Seattle Children’s Hospital to research premature births and work toward a solution for what is described as the leading cause of death for newborns. The money will be used by Children’s Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS) initiative.


Preventing Preterm Birth Is Long Overdue
Impatient Optimists, Nov. 7, 2011

I was born on December 25th, more than a month before expected, as a surprise “Christmas present” for my family. Like many preterm babies, I was small and had trouble breathing on my own. That’s why I’m excited that the Gates Foundation is teaming up with the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS).


A Baby Step Forward
Healthy Newborn Network, Nov. 7, 2011

This week, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced a new Grand Challenges in Global Health program – Preventing Preterm Birth. The Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth (GAPPS), an initiative of Seattle Children’s, was awarded a $20 million grant to lead a global effort to increase the chances of healthy pregnancies and births.


Experts gather in Seattle to tackle the rise in premature births
Seattle Times, May 9, 2009

The health problems of rich and poor countries are often very different, but premature birth is a plague that strikes women around the world. "It happens to women in Seattle and Sri Lanka," said Dr. Craig Rubens, of Seattle Children's hospital and executive director of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth, or GAPPS.

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