Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is an important cause of invasive CMV disease in immune compromised individuals and a leading cause of congenital infection globally. Invasive CMV disease in patients with immune compromise results in significant morbidity and mortality. Congenital CMV infection is the leading non-hereditary hearing loss in children both in the U.S. and worldwide. It is estimated that between 3,000 and 6.000 children born annually in the U.S. experience long-term neurodevelopmental sequelae from congenital CMV infection. The 2019 CMV Conference (CMV2019) is the combined 7th biannual Congenital CMV Conference and the 17th International CMV Workshop. This integrated meeting brings together researchers working on all aspects of CMV disease, clinicians, public health policy experts and parents and advocates with a primary goal of reducing the disease burden from CMV infections. The topics that will be selected include those at the forefront of CMV research and the program is planned to disseminate new findings that can be translated to reduce or mitigate the consequences of CMV infections in immune compromised individuals and infants with congenital CMV infection. Topics will include (1) molecular mechanisms of CMV disease in various clinical settings, (2) pathogenesis of mother-to-child transmission of CMV, (3) virus-host interactions (4) cutting-edge knowledge on virus genetic diversity and its role in transmission and disease, and (5) effective intervention and prevention strategies to reduce the disease burden from CMV infection. In addition to the unique collection of research topics, this meeting provides a platform for new speakers, early stage investigators, and trainees. We will designate a proportion of invited presentations and session chairs for trainees or new investigators. Also, at least half of invited speakers and session chairs will be women. In addition to oral presentations, posters will be displayed throughout the conference and the two poster sessions will be held at the end of the day with extended periods of time for the presenters and attendees to interact and exchange ideas. By bringing the best of the CMV research community together, the overall goal of this conference is to advance the field towards innovative research and novel strategies for translating research findings to help alleviate the public health impact of CMV disease in all patient populations.

Public Health Relevance

Human cytomegalovirus (CMV) is a cause of significant disease burden in immune compromised individuals and in congenitally infected children. The disease burden from congenital CMV infection equals or exceeds other more commonly known conditions including Down syndrome and fetal alcohol syndrome and therefore, a major public health burden worldwide, because of its prevalence, economic costs, and the overall number of individuals with permanent disabilities. Despite the importance of CMV infection to overall health, current understanding of the disease mechanisms, available options for treatment/intervention, and prevention strategies are limited. By highlighting emerging concepts, state-of-the-art knowledge, and addressing strategies to improve translation of scientific findings to viable intervention strategies, the CMV2019 will promote advances that have a high chance to improve health.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
Conference (R13)
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Communication Disorders Review Committee (CDRC)
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Watson, Bracie
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University of Alabama Birmingham
Schools of Medicine
United States
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