CDI LogoOur Children’s Discovery Institute (CDI), a partnership between St. Louis Children’s Hospital and Washington University, is the result of an intense commitment to bring about dramatic results in pediatric care to offer innovative, therapeutic treatments for patients who were previously considered untreatable. 

With philanthropic gifts to the CDI, St. Louis Children’s Hospital Foundation drives pediatric discoveries to uncover what may now seem unfindable … lifesaving treatments and cures for childhood illnesses. Since CDI’s inception in 2006, awards granted through St. Louis Children’s Hospital Foundation for CDI investigator-led projects have generated more than 1,100 scientific papers and more than $467 million in external grant funding — including prestigious funding awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). 

Bringing together physician-scientists from every specialty, CDI research seeks more precise, less toxic and personalized therapies for a broad spectrum of childhood diseases. CDI research initiatives hold promise to find better treatments for pediatric cancers, lung diseases, heart disorders, primary immunodeficiency and many other conditions, as well as to develop new techniques to provide individualized therapies — also known as precision medicine — for these conditions. The CDI is an invaluable resource that allows us to turn promising research concepts into real-world strategies that can save lives and improve patient care. 

The proactive care and research taking place at our hospital, through discoveries from the CDI, ensures access to the most advanced, life-changing health and medical treatments for children in need throughout the St. Louis region and beyond. Together, we make a positive difference in our communities by ensuring healthcare equity for children and improving their wellness and quality of life.

The CDI makes pediatric research grants within five Centers. The Center approach is intended to focus thinking and innovation through open participation and the exchange of ideas.

  • Congenital Heart Disease Center
  • McDonnell Pediatric Cancer Center
  • Center for Pediatric Pulmonary Disease
  • Center for Metabolism and Immunity
  • The Hermann Center for Child and Family Development

The Children's Discovery Institute is not currently accepting Letters of Intent. Future grant cycles will be posted here and announced via the Washington University's Research News Listserv.

Document Access:
Please access documents related to the CDI at the WUSTL Box link below. The CDI Grants Portal link is below for direct access. 

Link to WUSTL Box:

  • CDI Documents for LOI and Proposal Submission
  • CDI Information on Active Cores (Genome Technologies Core, Pediatric Disease Mouse Models Core, Washington University Center for Cellular Imaging, Zebrafish Models for Pediatric Research)
  • CDI Policies & Guidelines
  • List of CDI Awards (Current & Past)

Link to CDI Grants Portal (use to submit an LOI, Proposal, or Progress Report):

Please contact Betsy Crites at 314.286.2808 or [email protected] with any questions or if any additional documents are needed.