How Donations Are Used

CURED supports and is a part of the Consortium of Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Researchers (CEGIR). CEGIR is a network focusing on  three distinct diseases of eosinophilic esophagitis, eosinophilic gastritis, and eosinophilic colitis. CEGIR furthers research and clinical expertise, trains clinical investigators, supports pilot clinical research projects, and provides access to information related to eosinophilic disorders for basic and clinical researchers, physicians, patients, and the public.

CURED contributes meaningfully by leading from within CEGIR and also donating $25 thousand to CEGIR’s initiatives. To read more about CEGIR and the CURED Foundation, click here.

CURED Foundation provided funds and/or grants at the below facilities:

Consortium of Eosinophilic Gastrointestional Disease Researchers (CEGIR)Children’s Hospital Colorado & University of Illinois at ChicagoCincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago Lurie Children’s Hospital Of Chicago & Stanley Manne Children’s Research InstituteNorthwestern University & Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago University Of North CarolinaBrigham and Women's HospitalRady Children's Hospital San DiegoInternational Eosinophil SocietyMassachusetts General Hospital


CEGIR was founded in Fall 2014 with an NIH grant (U54 AI117804). The NIH grant is funded by the Office of Rare Diseases Research, which is part of the NIH’s National Center for Advance Translational Studies, as part of the Rare Disease Research Network. This award is co-funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

CURED donations fund trainees located across the United States and novel exploratory projects. Trainee research includes (1) the interface between IgE-related mediated food allergy and EoE; (2) the mechanism of action of proton pump inhibitors in EoE; and (3) T cell-related factors that predispose participants in oral immunotherapy to develop EoE. The CEGIR CURED donation is helping CEGIR to make great strides to find treatments and cures for Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Diseases.


Children’s Hospital Colorado – Dr. Glenn Furuta
University of Illinois at Chicago – Dr. Steven Ackerman

  • Studies about the Esophageal String Test

    The Esophageal String Test (EST) is a minimally invasive device that can be used to learn about underlying causes of EoE and to monitor disease activity in patients. Drs. Ackerman and Furuta continue to perform studies with the EST to validate it for clinical use by patients and to understand the mechanisms of EoE in order to develop new treatments.

    The pathology of EoE involves remodeling of the esophagus that contributes to clinical symptoms such as dysphagia and food impactions. Drs. Ackerman and Furuta have performed studies identifying a pathway called Epithelial Mesenchymal Transition (EMT) that contributes to the development of esophageal fibrosis in EoE, and they are continuing to study how this process is induced and can be reversed.

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center – Dr. Marc Rothenberg

As the Principal Investigator of the Rothenberg CURED Laboratory and good friend of the CURED Foundation, I wish to express my sincere appreciation and gratitude for the many years of funding that the CURED Foundation has provided to the Rothenberg CURED Laboratory. The CURED Foundation, who has donated millions of dollars to research, is a genuine driver of research and clinical practice progress for eosinophilic gastrointestinal disorders, and it is a privilege and honor to be entrusted as a recipient of such funds, which represent countless hours of time and service of CURED Foundation members and families. As we continue to partner together in our quest for improved diagnosis, treatments, and a CURE for eosinophilic conditions through research, I wanted to take a moment to share with you a glimpse of what your amazing foundation has made possible through its support.


Marc Rothenberg, MD, PhD

Director, Division of Allergy and Immunology, Cincinnati Children’s
Director, Cincinnati Center for Eosinophilic Disorders, Cincinnati Children’s
Director, Consortium of Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disease Researchers

Read the full letter


Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital Of Chicago – Dr. Joshua Wechsler

Luri Children's Campaign "for every child" Progress Update Summary - September 2021

Lurie Children’s is incredibly grateful for the CURED Foundation’s partnership and for the generous and ongoing support of research conducted by Joshua Wechsler, MD and his laboratory. The Wechsler team’s research is advancing our understanding about the dietary triggers of eosinophilic gastrointestinal diseases (EGIDs) and the role mast cells play in EGIDs. While the COVID-19 pandemic created some delays, the Wechsler Lab was nevertheless able to advance the two CURED-funded studies. We are pleased to share key accomplishments from these studies:

  • Prospective Confirmation of the Molecular Signature of Dietary Therapy Responses and Triggers

    This study aims to validate the three gene panel that Dr. Wechsler’s laboratory identified with prior support from CURED. The gene panel predicts the outcome of single versus multiple food triggers of EoE to understand more about dietary responses and triggers. Ultimately, a test for biomarkers of trigger foods would allow clinicians to identify the optimal food(s) to eliminate for each child. This would help reduce trial and error, as well as reduce the need for multiple endoscopies. Progress includes:

    • Collected an increased number of tissue samples (100 versus the anticipated 60)
    • Completed RNA isolation from these samples
  • A Novel Investigation to Examine the Role of Mast Cells in EoE

    This research will provide an increased understanding of the role of mast cell inflammation and activation in EGIDs. Found in most tissues throughout the body, mast cells function as environmental sensors to trigger the immune system. This research is critical to identify the need to quantify mast cells as a treatment outcome and identify novel therapeutic targets to care for patients with EGIDs.

    • Obtained two prospective cohorts of children with EoE and controls with which to identify peripheral biomarkers of mast cell inflammation
    • Developed an artificial intelligence (Al) algorithm that is more accurate that standard methods to quantify mast cells
    • Received a $25,000 grant to support our work to determine if mast cell density in EoE patients is increased with co-morbid connective tissue disease

    Dr. Wechsler’s research will lead to new diagnostic and treatment options to improve the lives of children with EoE. Support from CU RED has been crucial to his efforts and will ultimately transform care for patients living with EGIDs.

Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital Of Chicago – Dr. Barry K. Wershil Research Team at Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute

  • Molecular Targeting of Dietary Therapy for Eosinophilic Esophagitis

    CURED generously provided grant support for this study which seeks to better understand and perfect the dietary therapy treatment approach. Through RNA sequencing and analysis of an existing clinical and biological patient database, Dr. Wershil and his team hope to be able to identify genetic markers that will be predictive of their response to dietary elimination therapies.

    This result would allow for a more personalized, tailored treatment choice, easing the suffering of kids and families being seen and treated for EoE. We are so grateful to CURED for its shared interest in this unique research project. Its potential results could provide a better quality of life for so many diagnosed with this illness.

Northwestern University – Dr. Paul Bryce
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago – Dr. Joshua Wechsler

  • The role of mast cells in persistent symptoms and abnormal endoscopic findings in pediatric Eosinophilic Esophagitis

    Diagnosis of Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE), as well as effectiveness of therapies, is dependent on the presence of eosinophils within the esophagus tissue upon biopsy. Key to our proposal was the observation that many patients with symptoms of EoE show abnormal endoscopic findings and yet lack these cells in their tissue. Accumulating evidence has suggested the role of another immune cell, the mast cell, in EoE but their contribution to patients who lack eosinophils in unknown.

    The support from CURED allowed us to examine the mast cell densities and phenotype in pediatric EoE and to examine these cells in patients who are classed as being in disease remission.

    Using a comprehensive database that accumulates information from the medical records, endoscopic reports, allergy testing, and pathology of eosinophils and mast cells, and beyond, we have established new insights into the response to therapy, and mechanistic involvement of eosinophils versus mast cells. We believe that this research opens new avenues for therapeutic treatment of EoE and understanding the diversity of responses within patients.

    The initial support from CURED was transformative in allowing us to establish this work and to obtain the preliminary data necessary for further funding applications to the National Institutes of Health.

    We were able to develop an algorithm for measuring the staining levels, and have posted this on a website that is freely available for pathologists and clinicians to use to help gauge how likely the diagnosis of EoE is (

    The results have been published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (2014; 12: 2015‑2022). This study could not have been completed without the support of CURED, and the diagnostic methods developed in this project can help with challenging clinical cases or diagnostic dilemmas.

University Of North Carolina – Dr. Evan Dellon

  • Validation of major basic protein and eotaxin-3 staining for diagnosis of eosinophilic esophagitis

    With the support of this grant, we were able to validate a new way to diagnose EoE and help to distinguish it from gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). This study extended our prior preliminary work examining special esophageal biopsy staining (“immunohistochemistry”) for factors related to eosinophil inflammation and activation. Specifically, by looking at major basic protein (“MBP”, an eosinophil marker) and eotaxin-3 (a factor that draws eosinophils to the esophagus), as well as a different marker called tryptase (a stain for mast cells, another inflammatory cell involved in EoE), we were able to see that these were highly elevated in patients with EoE, but not highly elevated in non‑EoE control patients, including those with GERD.

    We were able to develop an algorithm for measuring the staining levels, and have posted this on a website that is freely available for pathologists and clinicians to use to help gauge how likely the diagnosis of EoE is (

    The results have been published in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (2014; 12: 2015‑2022). This study could not have been completed without the support of CURED, and the diagnostic methods developed in this project can help with challenging clinical cases or diagnostic dilemmas.

  • Diagnosis and monitoring of eosinophilic esophagitis using the Cytosponge

    This study, which is ongoing and currently enrolling patients, is examining the use of the Cytosponge, a new minimally invasive test, for diagnosis and monitoring of EoE. The Cytosponge is a foam sponge which is contained within a dissolvable capsule and attached to a string. The capsule is swallowed, dissolves in the stomach, the sponge expands into a sphere, and after 5 minutes is retrieved by a nurse by pulling the string. As the sponge is withdrawn, cells along the whole length of the esophagus are collected by the foam sphere, which allows an esophageal tissue sample to be obtained. The foam sphere, now containing cells, can be examined using standard pathology methods.

    The main goals of this project are to assess the safety, acceptability, and accuracy of Cytosponge for diagnosis and monitoring of EoE in comparison to endoscopy and biopsy.

    The study is being performed in a collaboration between University of North Carolina and Mayo Clinic. We hope that if this technique is effective, the Cytosponge may be an important way to assess EoE disease activity in the future without requiring an endoscopy and biopsy.

    Accuracy and Safety of the Cytosponge for assessing Histologic Activity in Eosinophilic Esophagitis: A Two Center Study