Northwestern Awarded More Than $3.5 Million to Lead National Children's Study in Open Source Information Management System Consortium

Warren Kibbe
Principal Investigator,
Warren Kibbe, PhD

The Northwestern University Biomedical Informatics Center (NUBIC) announced last week that it has been awarded $3.695 million for the next year to continue to lead an Open Source Information Management System (IMS) Consortium for ten National Children’s Study (NCS) Site Locations. This initiative has resulted in the formation of the NCS Navigator Information Management Hub. NCS Navigator is an open source information management system that is ideally suited to provide operational and case management capabilities for the National Children’s Study.

Northwestern University researcher Warren Kibbe, PhD, is the principal investigator for the NCS Navigator information management system (IMS). Northwestern University has also been the lead institution for the NCS in the greater Chicago area under the leadership of Dr. Jane Holl, MD MPH. Dr. Holl and Dr. Richard Gershon, PhD have recently been awarded the South Regional Operations Center, enabling Northwestern to play a lead role in continuing the NCS at ten study locations in the south of the United States. Dr. Holl, in addition to her involvement in the National Children’s Study, is the Director of the Center for Healthcare Studies, a Professor of Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine, and University and Dr. Gershon is a Professor in the Department of Medical Social Sciences in the Feinberg School of Medicine of Northwestern.

Dr. Kibbe is the director for cancer informatics in the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, the director of bioinformatics for the Center for Genetic Medicine, and the co-director of the NU Biomedical Informatics Center (NUBIC) in the Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (NUCATS). He was named one of the top 25 most innovative Healthcare CIOs in 2012. When asked about the NCS Navigator IMS, Dr. Kibbe stated, "Northwestern has been asked to serve the National Children’s Study in two very important capacities - as a lead innovator for providing information management tools and services to the NCS and in providing key foundational concepts for understanding the health and wellbeing of the eventual 100,000 participants in the National Children’s Study. The first goal is the culmination of years of innovative informatics research in NUBIC and the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. The second goal is based on the ground breaking work of Dr. Jane Holl and her team in understanding health, society, children and human development. This dual recognition by the NCS is an incredible achievement for us and I am very indebted to the leadership that Dr. Holl has provided locally and nationally. The NCS Navigator award is an opportunity to further enhance the open source information management system and ensure that it is generalized and accessible for national large scale epidemiological and longitudinal studies. With the NCS Navigator solution in place, we are ideally poised to meet the information management needs of the National Children’s Study and contribute to the nation’s understanding of child health, health measurement, and healthy outcomes. We are also positioned to provide innovative information management and analysis strategies for additional large scale studies that will emerge from the NCS and other NIH research projects. The NCS Navigator system is ideally suited to provide data management solutions for measuring outcomes, enhancing health potential, building new disease prevention strategies and improving care. This contract is really a watershed moment for Northwestern Informatics and our ability to contribute intellectually to any group seeking solutions for data management and data coordination for large multisite studies.”

Dr. Kibbe was honored for his "Outstanding Contribution to the National Children's Study" during the executive steering committee meeting of the National Children's Study in August 2011 on the National Institutes of Health campus in Bethesda, Maryland.

For more information about the National Children's Study, visit or call 866-315-7124.

The National Children's Study (NCS) is the largest long-term study of children's health ever conducted in the United States, and will follow 100,000 children from before birth to age 21 to learn how the environment influences children's health, development, and quality of life. The Study is led by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in collaboration with a consortium of federal government partners. Study partners include the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences of the NIH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Environmental Protection Agency.