Bringing together the world's leading life science and data science experts

Nurturing Life's Strongest Beginnings

A Collaborative Initiative By

ubc PNG
proof PNG
ubc PNG
unitoronto JPG

Born Strong Initiative

Nurturing Health from the Very Beginning

The Born Strong Initiative is a visionary global endeavor driven by an unwavering commitment to transform the trajectory of human health right from the very beginning of life. Rooted in the profound connection between mothers and their infants, this initiative is a beacon of hope and innovation. It seeks to empower mothers by fortifying their immune systems before and during pregnancy, ultimately enhancing the immune resilience of their babies. At its core, Born Strong is a testament to the profound potential of science, bringing together cutting-edge research, systems biology, and artificial intelligence to unlock the mysteries of maternal-fetal-newborn immunity. This initiative isn't just about changing health outcomes; it's about rewriting the story of generations, catalyzing a wave of transformation that shapes healthier lives for the countless children who will follow. Born Strong stands as a promise, a legacy, and an invitation to join the journey of creating a world where every child is truly born strong.

303K deaths per day

Every year, nearly 303,000 infants die within 24 hours of being born. A staggering 99% of these neonatal deaths occur in low and middle-income countries, where access to quality maternal and neonatal care is often limited. The Born Strong Initiative strives to bridge this gap by bolstering maternal immune resilience, aiming to reduce these heartbreaking statistics and give every child a fighting chance from their very first breath.

810 deaths daily

Maternal mortality remains a pressing global concern. Despite progress, approximately 810 women die daily due to pregnancy and childbirth-related complications. Most of these deaths are preventable, underscoring the urgency of initiatives like Born Strong. By focusing on maternal health and immune resilience, we can help ensure mothers are healthier and better equipped to nurture their infants.


Malnutrition contributes to nearly 45% of all deaths among children under the age of five. Maternal nutrition during pregnancy plays a pivotal role in fetal development, affecting a child's health for life. The Born Strong Initiative recognizes the profound impact of maternal health on infants and is dedicated to strengthening immune systems to provide a brighter, healthier future for the youngest members of our global family.

3 million stillborn per year 

Aprofound global tragedy transcending borders and socio-economic divides. These statistics underscore the need for comprehensive improvements in maternal and fetal health. Beyond the medical aspect, addressing this issue necessitates enhancing healthcare access, reducing disparities, and fostering greater awareness. It's crucial to remember that each stillbirth represents shattered dreams and futures, not just numbers. 

15 Million premature babies per year

This issue extends beyond low and middle-income countries, affecting 1 in 12 babies in the US. Shockingly, these rates double among Aboriginal populations and African American mothers. What's concerning is that these statistics have remained stagnant for decades, reflecting our limited understanding of the causes of preterm birth. Equally troubling is the absence of vaccines, diagnostics, or therapeutics to effectively prevent and manage this pressing health challenge.

Join the Born Strong Initiative

Unite for Healthier Beginnings 

Are you ready to be a part of a transformative movement that's rewriting the story of global health? The Born Strong Initiative beckons, and it's more than just an initiative; it's a chance to be a catalyst for change. As we navigate the complexities of maternal-fetal-newborn immunity, we invite like-minded projects and organizations to join hands with us. Together, we can amplify our impact, accelerate research, and nurture a world where every child is born with the strength to thrive. Let's break down barriers, shatter boundaries, and pave the way for healthier beginnings and stronger futures. Your project can be a vital piece of this intricate puzzle. Join the Born Strong Initiative today, and let's shape health, transform futures, and leave a legacy that resonates across generations. Together, we have the power to make a profound difference in the world.


Science Meets Efficiency

Unleash the Power of Purposeful Research. Traditional research management can be an uphill battle, bogged down by paperwork, contracts, and administrative hassles. But with the Born Strong Research Accelerator, you're not just managing projects – you're orchestrating a movement that shapes the course of life. Say goodbye to procurement delays and lost admin hours. Say hello to streamlined processes that let you channel your energy into what truly matters: groundbreaking research.

From Projects to Programs

Amplify Impact, Minimize Overhead. We know that the Born Strong Initiative is more than a single project – it's a sweeping endeavor that touches lives across the globe. Our platform shifts gears from mere project management to holistic program orchestration. Seamlessly set up, manage, and optimize a network of interconnected research initiatives, all working towards the same goal: giving every child the strongest possible start in life.

Data Insights that Drive Change

Catalyze Progress with Analytics. What if you could see the future of your research? With the Born Strong Research Accelerator, you can. Our robust data collection and advanced analytics tools unveil hidden patterns, identify potential breakthroughs, and guide your strategies with unprecedented precision. Dive deep into insights that matter, adapt your approach in real time, and ignite a cascade of transformative advancements.

Standardization for Unparalleled Success

Forge a Path to Excellence. Gone are the days of piecemeal research methodologies. Embrace the power of standardization, where every step is optimized, every process is refined, and success becomes second nature. By providing an end-to-end framework that sets the gold standard in research execution, the Born Strong Research Accelerator empowers your team to focus on groundbreaking science while we take care of the rest.

Impact for Generations

Shape Health, Transform Futures. Your vision for a healthier world is immense, and so is the potential of the Born Strong Research Accelerator. By leveraging cutting-edge advancements in systems biology and artificial intelligence, we're putting the power of the maternal-fetal-newborn immune relationship at your fingertips. Empower mothers, fortify babies' immune resilience, and shape the health trajectory of millions for generations to come.

Why Partner with Born Strong?

Discover the myriad advantages of collaborating with the Born Strong Initiative. Join us in the quest to reshape maternal and infant health on a global scale. Explore the benefits of becoming a part of our transformative movement, from accelerating research and gaining access to cutting-edge technology to leaving a lasting humanitarian legacy. See how your project can thrive in a collaborative, data-driven environment while making a profound impact on the health of generations to come.

  • Global Impact: By joining the Born Strong Initiative, you become part of a global network dedicated to improving maternal and infant health. Your project's efforts will contribute to a worldwide movement aimed at reducing infant mortality and enhancing the well-being of mothers and children.
  • Research Synergy: Collaboration is at the heart of the initiative. Joining means access to a collaborative research environment where insights and knowledge are shared. This synergy can accelerate discoveries and propel your own research forward.
  • Cutting-Edge Technology: Born Strong leverages state-of-the-art systems biology and artificial intelligence. By participating, you gain access to cutting-edge tools and technology, enhancing the quality and depth of your research.
  • Standardized Excellence: Born Strong promotes standardized research practices, reducing administrative overhead and streamlining processes. This enables you to focus more on your research and less on paperwork and logistics.
  • ​​Data-Driven Insights: The initiative prioritizes data collection and analytics. You'll have access to rich data insights that can guide your research strategy, helping you make informed decisions and uncover new opportunities.
  • ​​Increased Visibility: Becoming part of Born Strong can boost your project's visibility on a global scale. It offers opportunities to showcase your research and collaborate with renowned institutions and researchers.​
  • Humanitarian Impact: Your participation directly contributes to improving the lives of mothers and infants. It's a chance to align your research goals with a humanitarian mission and create a lasting legacy of positive change.
  • Collaborative Learning: Engaging with other projects and organizations within the initiative provides a fertile ground for collaborative learning. Sharing knowledge and experiences can lead to fresh insights and innovative approaches.
  • ​​Recognition and Awards: Born Strong acknowledges and celebrates the contributions of its partners. Your project may have opportunities to receive recognition and awards for impactful research and initiatives.​
  • Future-Proofing: As the scientific landscape evolves, the initiative adapts. By joining, you ensure that your project remains at the forefront of maternal and infant health research, continuously adapting to emerging trends and technologies.
  • ​​Inspiration and Purpose: Working towards such a noble cause can be highly motivating and purposeful. Joining the Born Strong Initiative allows you to align your research with a mission that has the potential to transform lives.
  • ​​Networking: Access a diverse network of researchers, healthcare professionals, and institutions. This expanded network can open doors to collaborative opportunities, funding, and resources.
  • ​​Long-Term Impact: Your involvement in Born Strong isn't just about short-term gains. It's about creating a long-term impact that extends beyond your project's lifespan, contributing to a healthier future for generations to come.
ubc PNG
proof PNG
ubc PNG
unitoronto JPG


MATVAC Study: Intervention BEFORE pregnancy

Lead Pl: Dr. Christine Stabell Benn, University of Southern Denmark

Observations suggest that maternal BCG vaccination may reduce the incidence of adverse pregnancy outcomes (BMC Public Health. 2021 PMID: 34140010). Live vaccines such as BCG and measles vaccine (MV) have broad beneficial effects far beyond their target pathogens (Lancet Infect Dis. 2020 PMID: 32645296).
To assess the possibility of immune modulation in the mother prior to pregnancy via BCG or MV, we are conducting a RCT in Guinea Bissau where 3.200 healthy fertile women are randomized to receive BCG, MV vs neither prior to conception, are followed throughout their pregnancy with standardized blood sample and clinical metadata collection for the mother and her baby. The first 450 women (150 in each arm) have already been enrolled, and the first pregnancies recorded.

PREMITUR Study: Intervention DURING pregnancy

Lead Pl: Dr, Michelle Giles, Monash University and Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity

Observations suggest that immunization during pregnancy with the recommended vaccines, influenza and pertussis, could drastically reduce incidence of adverse pregnancy outcomes (stillbirth, preterm birth), independent of the effect on influenza or pertussis disease (Front lmmunol. 2021 PMID: 34557193).
The mechanisms responsible for this pathogen-agnostic benefit are now being investigated in the PREMITUR study. 400 women and their babies will be followed longitudinally throughout pregnancy and beyond, with biological samples
collected from both mother and baby to be analyzed in a multiomics approach via machine learning to reveal signatures of vaccination•associated protective signals.

AGREE study: Intervention DURING pregnancy

Lead Pl: Prof Kevin Kain, University of Toronto, Canada

The AGREE study is a randomised controlled trial with the primary objective to determine if daily antenatal oral supplementation with 4g L-citrulline can reduce adverse pregnancy outcomes (defined as a composite of fetal loss, infants born small for gestational age (SGA) or with low birth weight (LBW), or preterm birth) among pregnant women at high risk of malaria and protein undernutrition in Kenya. Outcomes about neonatal infection, mortality and development will also be collected.

PRINCE Study: Long-term follow up of MIA impact AFTER pregnancy

Lead Pl: Dr. Petra Arck, University Medical Center Hamburg

The PRINCE study (PRenatal ldeNtification of Children's HEalth) is a prospective longitudinal pregnancy cohort study which commenced in 2011 at the University Medical Center Hamburg. It is one of the most comprehensive cohorts of pregnant woman in Europe. Pregnancy complications were recorded and included approx. 7-8 % of preterm birth, among other complications such as
gestational diabetes or stillbirth. The health and early hfe environment of the children born in the PRINCE study is documented using questionnaires. sent between the age of six month to four years. Queries include the application of vaccines (time point, specific vaccine used) and the incidence of infections. At the age of five years, the children participate in an on-site visit, where a physical examination is performed and blood is taken. Also, possible adverse effects to vaccines have been documented. To date. approx. 350 children have been seen at the age of five years. Analysis of samples is in progress.  

Artificial Intelligence in the fight against PTB and SB

Pl  Nima Aghaeepour

Recent advances in high-throughput technologies have provided access to multiomics biological data that, combined with clinical and social data, can provide a deeper understanding of normal and abnormal pregnancies.
Integration of these heterogeneous datasets using state-of-the-art machine-learning methods can enable the prediction of short- and long-term health trajectories for a mother and offspring, risk for stillbirth, preterm birth. and the development of treatments to prevent or minimize complications. Our experts in this space have successfully developed the platform.
Translating these into non-invasive (e.g. urine samples assessed like the covid RAT test) point of care (PoC) tests is our next step to make easier longitudinal monitoring. even at home or in remote settings.

Wearables for fetal and maternal monitoring

Pl; Nima Aghaeepour; Negar Tavasso1ian

Wearables allow continuous, non-invasive monitoring of gestational health (mother and fetus) at home and in remote settings. The benefits of this approach are numerous. The technology has long been available. Missing was the ability to reliably extract meaning from the noise. Our team has now accomplished this. We now will test their breakthrough discoveries in the field.