Raina Fichorova, MD, PhD, chief of the Division of Genital Tract Biology in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, received a five-year, $4.1 million grant from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to further her research on the connection between immunology and reproductive health. Fichorova’s project will investigate the mechanisms by which mucosal surfaces can sense a microbiome and send out non-coding RNA to affect immunity and susceptibility to infection, as well as how reproductive hormones may steer this process. This study will involve reproductive-aged women from Africa and the US. Fichorova is founding director of the Brigham’s Laboratory of Genital Tract Biology. More broadly, her research focuses on the healthy immunobiome, the inflammatory pathways of disease and preventable immunoinflammatory conditions in mothers that are linked to child health outcomes. The NICHD supports and funds research on human development at all stages, including conception, fetal development and early-childhood to adolescent development.