The sickle cell program was created in 2011 to accelerate the translation of basic discovery to therapeutic application. The program is focused on pre-clinical and clinical testing of drugs and innovative compounds that reduce polymerization, improve red cell rheology, or induce fetal hemoglobin; elucidating genetic modifiers that may affect disease severity; studying and preventing end organ damage that may lead to increased morbidity and mortality; and the development of potentially curative stem cell transplantation strategies.