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Our History

    The Pediatric Nephrology Research Consortium (PNRC) was initially called the Midwest Pediatric Nephrology Consortium (MWPNC) when it was established in 2004.  The founding premise originated on a napkin over a few beers, but it acknowledged that

      • compared to other disciplines, there had been relatively few advancements in the clinical care of children with kidney disease…
      • BUT what if we were to establish an infrastructure for everyone in our pediatric nephrology community to answer the questions that we were most passionate about to improve the care of their patients? 
      • Such a model could greatly accelerate the improvements in care we all want for our patients...
      • BUT would our colleagues join such an effort??

    The MWPNC at its inception in 2004 (with support and vision of Dr. Craig Helms, PharmD at Genentech) was based on the vision of the founding members, including Dennis Geary, MD, John D. Mahan, MD, Tej Mattoo, MD, and William E. Smoyer, MD, followed shortly thereafter by the addition of Larry Greenbaum, MD, PhD.   

    The first MWPNC meeting included representatives from 24 pediatric nephrology programs across the Midwest in beautiful, bucolic Toledo, Ohio in March 2004 on the Maumee Riverfront (using such a central location to help keep down travel costs for many participants).  Ever since its inception, the MPWNC has held two meetings each year, one each spring and fall for a total of 34 meetings in 22 different cities (including 23 different host institutions) across the U.S. and Canada.  We firmly believe that the PNRC’s effectiveness and growth has clearly been derived and driven by the interactions generated by these personal biannual meetings.

    Due to significant growth in the number of participating programs over the first 15 years, and expansion of our research portfolio, the MWPNC in 2019 incorporated as a 501c3 nonprofit corporation, and changed our name to the Pediatric Nephrology Research Consortium (PNRC) to more accurately reflect the expansion of the consortium to include participating programs from all across the US and Canada.  Our first meeting as the PNRC, which also was largest meeting to date, was sponsored by St. Louis Children’s Hospital/Washington University and held in St. Louis, MO in September 2019.

    Our first MWPNC coordinator was Janice Winnick from the University of Michigan, and after 5 successful years, she was succeeded by Corinna Bowers, from Nationwide Children’s in 2008.  Corinna has done a wonderful job in managing our impressive growth in membership and science; and the transition to a fully incorporated non-profit organization.

    By the end of 2019, the consortium has completed 54 multi-center studies and has 33 active studies underway.  The MWPNC/PNRC has published a total of57 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals. Since inception, the consortium has received 21 grants, including …….

      • 6 NIH grants with direct costs totaling >$4.0 Million
      • 6 Industry grants with direct costs totaling >$2.1 Million

    We continue to make history, from expanding to membership now from 125 sites across North America, to record industry sponsorship of our biannual meetings, to now an impressive number of 55 MWPNC/PNRC peer-reviewed-publications, to new opportunities to take leadership roles in developing industry trials.

      A few ‘first’ facts to highlight:

      • 2006 – first NIH grant obtained by MWPNC (PI - Tej Mattoo – Tacrolimus and Plasmapheresis in Treatment-Resistant FSGS)
      • 2010 – Dennis Geary (one of the founding fathers) steps down from MWPNC Steering Committee
      • 2010 – first elections to appoint new Steering Committee members
      • 2014 – first multi-million dollar NIH grant for MWPNC (Bill Smoyer/Larry Greenbaum – CureGN)
      • 2016 – MWPNC successfully conducted its first coordinator’s meeting within the larger biannual MWPNC meeting; and has repeated these sessions 3 times since then
      • 2016 – MWPNC began to provide travel grants to trainees to attend the biannual meetings
      • 2016 – MWPNC developed Working Groups to function as incubators of research questions and proposals within the consortium – with 5 active Working Groups now
      • 2018 – first back-to-back meeting of MWPNC with another pediatric nephrology organization, CKiD, in St. Louis, MO.
      • 2019 – MWPNC transitioned to the fully incorporated PNRC and the newly constituted Board of Directors selected John D Mahan as first PNRC president, Tej Mattoo as first PNRC Treasurer, and Corinna Bowers as first Executive Director
      • 2020 – MWPNC/PNRC received its 21st grant to support pediatric nephrology research
      • 2020 – PNRC hosted the ASPN/PAS 2020 Virtual Meeting for Basic and Clinical Research

    We intend to continue to work on our mission to improve the care of children with kidney disorders through collaborative research and development of the next generation of talented investigators.  We will continue to accomplish and continue to innovate – with the group open to any professionals committed to working on our mission!

    PNRC Board of Directors

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    Columbus, OH 43215-2345

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