Research and Clinical Trials

Research and Clinical Trials

A researcher in the Neonatal Development Collaborative at Penn State examines a specimen under a microscope.

Participate in Research

We have a commitment to improving our understanding of disease, enhancing treatment options, and working to prevent childhood illnesses. You can help by participating.

Additional studies

Child and Adolescent Psychiatry offers additional studies below. For more information regarding these studies, please call 717 531 0003 extension 285968.

Evaluation of SPN-812 ER Efficacy and Safety in Children with ADHD - A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Pivotal Trial

Volunteers are needed for a research study testing the safety and effectiveness of a new once-a-day medication for ADHD.  Eligible participants include 6-17 year olds with ADHD. Parents must be willing to have their child’s ADHD treated with medication.  Participation for children (6-11 year olds) includes a total of 10 office visits and taking the study medication for eight weeks.  Participation for teenagers (12-17 year olds) includes a total of 9 office visits and taking the study medication for seven weeks. For all participants, the first visit includes a diagnostic assessment to determine study eligibility.  

Monetary Reward Processing and Emotion Regulation in Adolescence: An fMRI Pilot Study

This study is examining how the brain responds to rewards and losses, as well as how adolescents and their parents regulate emotions. Financial compensation is provided. For more information, call 717-531-0003 ext. 285965 or email acarroll@pennstatehealth.psu.edu.

Participation includes:

  • Children and parents will complete questionnaires
  • Children will complete computer tasks while in an MRI scanner
  • Parents may also have to option to complete and MRI scan

Mood and Social Functioning in Teen Girls with ADHD

This study examines social functioning and mood in teen girls with symptoms of ADHD, as well as their mothers or female guardians. Eligible participants are 12-16 year old girls who may be experiencing symptoms of ADHD, or may have a diagnosis of ADHD.  There is no direct treatment. Assessments are provided at no additional cost. Study participants are compensated. Participation includes:

  • A one-time, three hour appointment to complete questionnaires and lab tasks
  • Participation in surveys throughout one week by using a study provided cell phone

Neurophysiological Markers of Pediatric Irritability and its Response to Intervention

This study is examining if medication for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) improves problems with anger outbursts and irritability in children with ADHD. Eligible participants must be between the ages of 5 and 12 years, meet criteria for ADHD and have problems with anger outbursts or being frequently irritable. Study assessments are provided at no additional cost.  Study participants are compensated but families are responsible for the cost of filling medication prescriptions.  Participation includes:

  • Completion of computer games
  • Adjustment of current ADHD medication OR starting ADHD medication
  • Parent completing two weeks of daily ratings of their child’s behavior using a study provided cell phone

Parent Emotion Regulation

This study examines emotions and treatment for parents of children with attention and/or behavior problems.  Eligible participants are parents of children between the ages of 5 and 12 years who have a diagnosis of ADHD. There’s no extra cost to assess and treat participants. Treatment involves eight weekly sessions with parents to help improve their child’s behavior. Study participants are compensated. 

Participation includes:

  • Parents will complete computer games and rating scales
  • Parents will respond to surveys over a two-week time period using a study provided cell phone
  • Parents and children will be asked to participate in an optional, video recorded interaction task
  • Parents will participate in eight weekly sessions to learn strategies to help their child’s behavior problems

A Pilot Trial of Sub-typing Pediatric Conduct Problems by the Presence of Severe Persistent Irritability and Callous Unemotional Traits

This study assesses how sensitive children are to rewards and punishments, how they perceive emotions in others, and how their body reacts to unexpected events. Eligible participants are 7-12 years old with or without conduct and behavior problems. There is no direct treatment. Assessments are provided at no additional cost. Study participants are compensated. Participation includes:

  • Two visits to determine study eligibility
  • Completion of computer games and rating scales
  •  A possible third visit for additional computer games

Reward and Punishment Sensitivity Study

This study examines 7-12 year olds who have aggression and defiance issues. The study seeks to learn:

  • How these children are affected by rewards and punishments
  • Whether this relates to how they respond to treatment

There’s no extra cost to assess and treat participants. Treatment involves eight weekly sessions with parents to help improve their child’s behavior. Study participants are compensated.

6-12 Year Olds; ADHD/Behavior and Sleep (Med Intervention)

This studies is examining the effects of a booster dose of ADHD medication administered in the early evening (generic Ritalin or generic Adderall) and if it improves behavior problems in children and helps them get to bed on time. Eligible participants are between the ages of 6 and 12 years of age who are currently taking medication for the treatment of ADHD and have a hard time falling asleep. Treatment and assessments are provided at no additional cost. Study participants are compensated. Participation includes:

  • An intake visit to determine study eligibility
  • Taking a prescribed medication of low dose generic Ritalin or low dose generic Adderall for a three week period

Explore additional studies

Get involved

Clinical trials are research studies that use human volunteers to advance medical knowledge. Participants are a critical part of the process of developing new and enhanced treatments for diseases and conditions. Find a clinical trial.

Research programs at Children’s Hospital study pediatric cancer, neonatal development, immunotherapy, and cardiovascular and pulmonary function. In the Pediatric Innovation Program, clinicians and engineers collaborate to create medical devices. See all research programs.

Through their generous giving, donors enable us to make rapid advances in research. Research at the Children's Hospital is actively supported by numerous scientific funding agencies and philanthropies, including Children's Miracle Network and Four Diamonds. Learn more about giving.