Riley Hospital for Children has long been a pioneer in improving patient care and discovering new medical treatments. Our breakthroughs would not be possible without clinical research. Listed below are clinical research studies currently being conducted at Riley Hospital. Please email the coordinator for each study if you are interested in learning more.

Autoimmune Diseases

Immune Tolerance Network

Physicians: Linda DiMeglio, MD, MPH, and Mark Rigby, MD

Lead Coordinator: Maria Spall (

This group is committed to examining new treatments and therapies for autoimmune diseases, asthma, and allergic diseases and to preventing the rejection of transplanted kidneys and pancreatic islets.


Children’s Oncology Group

Physician: Jim Croop, MD

Lead Coordinator: Melissa Lee (

This network conducts clinical trials examining best treatment plans for children and adolescents with cancer. They also carry out studies related to quality of life for families experiencing cancer treatment as well as many basic laboratory research projects looking at new ways to improve childhood cancer outcomes.

Premature and Sick Newborns

Neonatal Research Network

Physician: Brenda Poindexter, MD, MS

Lead Coordinator: Leslie Wilson, BSN, CCRC (

The goal of this network is to conduct research studies with premature and term babies to reduce the problems that some babies have when they are born and to promote healthy outcomes.

Critically Ill Children

Pediatric Critical Care Clinical Research Network

Physician: Mark Rigby, MD, PhD

Lead Coordinator: Terry Barclay, RN (

This network concentrates on the studying and development of treatments and therapies for critically ill and injured children.

Cystic Fibrosis

Cystic Fibrosis Therapeutics Development Network

Physician: Michelle Howenstine, MD

Lead Coordinator: Terry Barclay, RN (

The focus of this network is to study different medications and/or treatment plans for children and adults with cystic fibrosis.



Physician: Linda DiMeglio, MD, MPH

Lead Coordinator: Maria Spall (

Diabetes TrialNet is an international network of centers dedicated to conducting research about therapies for people with newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetes and diabetes prevention.

Heart Disease

Pediatric Heart Network

Physician: R. Mark Payne, MD

Lead Coordinator: Lori Fitzgerald, MS  (

The mission of this network is to improve the health of children who develop or are born with heart disease.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Crohn’s and Colitis Network

Physician: Steven Steiner, MD

Lead Coordinator: Trisha Davis, RN (

This network concentrates on Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) looking at how this disease develops in order to provide different treatments.

Liver Disease

Children Network

Physician: Jean Molleston, MD

Lead Coordinator: Ann Klipsch (

The network studies several liver diseases of children. The goal is to learn more about diagnosis, outcomes, and treatments of these disorders.

Pregnancy and Medication Use

Obstetric-Fetal Pharmacology Research Units Network

Physicians: David Haas, MD, and David Flockhart, MD

Lead Coordinator: Suzanne Lemler, RN (

The focus of this network is to understand how medicines work during pregnancy. Currently the research is focused on blood sugar medications, antibiotics, steroids to prevent preterm birth and antidepressants.