Project Details

Early Career

Status: Funded - Open

Immune responses during primary CMV infection in pregnancy that correlate with viral containment

Frances Saccoccio, MD, PhD


BACKGROUND: Congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection is the most common infectious case of birth defects in the US, affecting 1:150 births each year. CMV infection leads to placental transmission in 30-40% of cases of primary infection versus approximately 3% in cases of CMV reinfection, suggesting that maternal CMV infection is partially protective against congenital CMV transmission.

GAP: A major research gap impeding congenital CMV vaccine development is a poor understanding of the protective maternal immune responses that are associated with protection against both CMV acquisition and placental transmission.

HYPOTHESIS: We hypothesize that high levels of CMV-specific humoral immune responses will correlate with rapid containment of viral replication.

METHODS: Immune correlates of rapid control of viremia will be determined in a cohort of women and infants with primary CMV infection.

RESULTS: Pending

IMPACT: Identification of immune correlates of CMV protective immune responses will lead to identification of new CMV vaccine targets to guide CMV immunogen design and vaccine trial endpoints.

Website Link:


Humoral Immune Correlates for Prevention of Postnatal Cytomegalovirus Acquisition