Drs. Saia and Wachman are collaborating on research projects that focus in improving and enhancing services to comprehensive obstetric and substance use disorder treatment for pregnant women and their newborns in Massachusetts. Dr. Saia is a Director of Project RESPECT (Recovery, Empowerment, Social Services, Prenatal care, Education, Community and Treatment), that is a high risk obstetrical and addiction recovery medical home at Boston Medical Center and Boston University School of Medicine. Dr. Wachman is the neonatal lead of the Massachusetts (MA) neoQIC NAS Quality Improvement Collaborative.  They are currently site investigators on the NIH awarded studies:

  • Safety, efficacy, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacogenomics of naltrexone in pregnant and postpartum women with opioid use disorder. (R01HD096798-01)  The major goals of this project are to examine the safety and efficacy of use of extended-release naltrexone in pregnant women by following these women and their infants throughout pregnancy and the first 12 months of life. Pharmacokinetics, genetic and epigenetic factors will also be examined.
  • Medication Treatment for Opioid-dependent Expecting Mothers (MOMs): A Pragmatic Randomized Trial Comparing Two Buprenorphine Formulations.  (NIDA CTN Protocol). This is a multi-centered open label RCT of sublingual versus injectable long-acting buprenorphine for pregnant women with opioid use disorder, examining maternal and infant outcomes to 24 months after delivery.


Our MFM specialists, Drs. Markenson and Yarrington are collaborating with Drs. Barnett and Pelton, nationally recognized for their work in Pediatric Infectious Diseases, to advance research related to vaccine administration in pregnancy and impact on new born babies. A research project that is currently underway:

  • Vaccination Pregnancy Study: Observational Maternal COVID-19 Vaccination. The objective of the proposed work is to evaluate the safety of COVID-19 vaccine in pregnant women, reactogenicity, pregnancy outcomes, and infant outcomes after vaccination by participating in protocol development, design and enrollment and follow-up. Source of Support: Centers for Disease Control
                • A phase 3, randomized, double- or observer-blinded, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy and safety of a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) prefusion subunit vaccine in infants born to women vaccinated during pregnancy  To evaluate the efficacy of RSVpreF in reducing the incidence of medically attended lower respiratory tract illness (MA-LRTI) in infants due to RSV. (NCT 04424316)


A collaborative project devised by our multidisciplinary team of obstetricians, psychiatrists and a behavior scientist, Drs. Markenson, Nilni, Rasmusson and Yarrington, is currently conducted at Boston Medical Center. This is a department sponsored, single site project, a feasibility study: Relationship of CNS Neurohormones and Neurotransmitters to Pregnancy Outcomes