Karen M. Puopolo, M.D., Ph.D. is a neonatologist who specializes in neonatal infectious diseases.
Dr. Puopolo is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania
Perelman School of Medicine. She is a member of the Division of Neonatology at The Children’s
Hospital of Philadelphia, and Section Chief for Newborn Medicine at Pennsylvania Hospital. Dr.
Puopolo received her undergraduate degree in physics from Yale University, and went on to obtain
her M.D. as well as a Ph.D. in molecular physiology from the Tufts University School of Medicine
in Boston. She completed Pediatric residency and Neonatal-Perinatal fellowship training at Boston
Children’s Hospital. Dr. Puopolo was appointed to the faculty of Harvard Medical School from
2000-2014 where she was a physician and researcher at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the
Channing Laboratory. She began her neonatal research career as a laboratory-based scientist
investigating mechanisms of virulence in Group B Streptococcus. Her current research focuses on
neonatal sepsis epidemiology and risk assessment. In collaboration with Dr. Gabriel Escobar, she
developed and validated models to quantify the risk of neonatal early-onset sepsis. She is currently
funded by the National Institutes of Health and the CDC to study the impact of neonatal antibiotic
exposures on the newborn and early childhood microbiome, and on infant and early childhood
growth. Dr. Puopolo is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on the Fetus