1908Stuart Foster and his team Sick Kids installs the first milk pasteurization plant in Canada, 30 years before it becomes mandatory. This act all but eliminates diseases transmitted by unpasteurized milk like tuberculosis, salmonella, and E.coli. Pasteurization dramatically decreases infant mortality in Canada.
1918First research lab set up at HSC.
1930Nutritional research by Drs. Alan Brown, Fred Tisdall and Theo Drake leads to the development of a new cereal food that later becomes famous the world over as Pablum.
1934Doctors Fred Tisdall and Theo Drake, working with the National Dairy Council demonstrate the value of enriching milk with vitamin D.
1935Dr. John Ross studies lead poisoning in children, resulting in the prohibition of lead pigments in paints on children’s toys and furniture.
1951A heart-lung machine is developed by HSC physicians Lawrence Chute, William Mustard and John Keith along with Campbell Cowan, Banting Institute.
1954The Research Institute is formally established as a division within the Hospital.
1963Dr. William Mustard pioneers to correct the birth defect of “blue babies” (transposition of the great arteries of the heart).
1965Researchers develop a lab procedure that cuts the time required to diagnose whooping cough from 5 days to 30 minutes.
1971Canada’s first successful surgical separation of conjoined twins takes place at HSC. Dr. B. Shandling led the team. There have been five surgical separations since then. .
1973Canada’s first transplant operation where a kidney from a living donor was given to a child took place at HSC. .
1979Dr. Robert Salter develops continuous passive motion, an improved method of treating patients with damaged cartilage.
1987Gene responsible for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy identified.
1988Gene defect that causes Tay-Sachs disease identified.
1989Sick Kids discovers the gene which when defective causes Cystic Fibrosis – the most fatal genetic disease killing Canadian children today.
1990HSC’s first heart transplant was performed. Sick Kids now performs approximately 15 heart transplants each year – about 80 per cent of Canada’s paediatric heart transplants.
1994Sick Kids develops a new way to treat retinoblastoma – a cancer of the eye that affects infants. This new treatment avoids radiation and can save baby’s eye.
1996Canada’s first basic science brain tumour research centre was opened at Sick Kids this year with a $5-million donation from Arthur and Sonia Labatt. The Arthur and Sonia Labatt Brain Tumour Research Centre brings together clinicians and scientists from Sick Kids, Toronto Western Hospital, and the University of Toronto to form a leading-edge collaborative laboratory focused on basic science research of human brain tumours, both in adults and children.SickKids successfully uses biological engineering to prevent the closing of a key passage between the two large blood vessels leading out of the heart to the body and lungs.SickKids concludes that occupational exposure to organic solvents during pregnancy increases the chances of major birth defects.
2000Inhaled steroids are found to be safe and effective for children with asthma. SickKids establishes the first pediatric MS clinic in North Americaand Canada’s first national registry to track multiple sclerosis in children. Researchers reverse fatal pulmonary hypertension.
2001A team of researchers led by The Hospital for Sick Children senior scientist has determined that multiple sclerosis and type I (Juvenile) diabetes mellitus are far more closely linked than previously thought, including the role cow milk protein plays as a risk factor in the development of both diseases for people who are genetically susceptible. SickKids discovers that infant heart transplants can be performed safely and successfully even when the blood types of the donor and recipient don’t match. SickKids, as a part of an international team, identifies a gene responsible for inherited prostate cancer. SickKids finds that a longer duration of breastfeeding appears to be protective against the development of asthma in young children.
2002Researchers find relationship between environmental tobacco smoke and the risk of SIDS. SickKids finds that exposure during pregnancy to the antidepressant drug paroxetine is associated with a high rate of neonatal complications. SickKids, in partnership with the Amgen Institute, finds a gene involved in pain relief. This discovery could lead to an entirely new approach to pain control.
2003Researchers find chemotherapy is an effective alternative to bone marrow transplant in acute myeloid leukemia patients with good prognosis. SickKids pinpoints the link between diabetes and nervous system autoimmunity, resulting in new therapeutic and diagnostic targets. SARS found to affect children less severly than it does adults. SickKids identifies, for the first time, a cancer stem cell responsible for brain tumours. This discovery may change how this deadly condition is studied and treated in the future. SickKids links maternal folic acid intake to a decreasein neuroblastoma – a deadly childhood cancer.
2004SickKids researchers show an association between paediatric multiple sclerosis (MS) and the Epstein-Barr virus, indicating that exposure to the virus at a certain time in childhood may be an important environmental trigger for the development of MS.       
2004Scientists at SickKids confirm that childhood and adult brain tumours originate from cancer stem cells and that these stem cells fuel and maintain tumour growth. This discovery has led to development of a mouse model for human brain tumours and opens the door for new therapeutic targets for the treatment of brain tumours.