​National CMV Foundation Sponsors $45,000 CMV Research Award

​National CMV Foundation Sponsors $45,000 CMV Research Award

The National CMV Foundation is excited to announce that it made its first research award in May 2017. Through the Pediatric Infectious Disease Society (PIDS), the foundation awarded a two-year, $45,000 fellowship award to Frances Saccoccio, MD, PhD.

Dr. Saccoccio is a 2nd year pediatric infectious disease fellow at Duke University. She is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicines’ combined MD/PhD Program and her dissertation and other research work has focused on congenital CMV vaccines. She is working with Dr. Sallie Permar, a well-established and recognized physician scientist who studies protective immune responses against congenital and postnatal CMV infection. 

Dr. Saccoccio is originally from Long Island, New York. She has completed over ten marathons and enjoys training along the numerous trails in the Durham area. During her time off she likes to explore the local farmers’ markets and restaurants. She also likes to travel to the beach and nearby Kerr Lake.

With the funds from the National CMV foundation, Dr. Saccoccio will study women who have a primary infection during pregnancy to examine their immune response to the infection. This will help us better understand what may help prevent transmission of CMF from an infected pregnant woman to the fetus. Determining immune responses that quickly control viral replication during pregnancy will lead to the development of new CMV vaccine targets. 

Duke University is one site participating in a clinical trial to determine whether treating pregnant women who have a primary CMV infection with CMV antibodies will reduce the number of babies infected with CMV. For more information on the clinical trial, click here

We are proud to support this research and look forward to sharing the results of Dr. Saccoccio’s research with our supporters.