Viral / Molecular Core
Infection of cells with HIV. The image shows a HOS cell with DNA labeled blue, cellular microtubules green, and the HIV matrix protein red. The image was generated by Phil McKenna and Frederic Bushman.
The Core provides comprehensive Viral and Molecular support to serve the needs of Penn/Wistar/CHOP investigators in the area of basic, translational and clinical HIV research. In addition to an offering of standard services, we are available to develop customized viral and molecular support services as needed in collaboration with CFAR investigators, training for new personnel, and Consultation, Training, and Mentoring as needed.
Virology Support Services include a virus repository stocked with wide range of primary, prototype and mutant virus strains; services for the isolation, phenotyping and genetic analysis of primary viruses from patient-derived tissues; HIV-1 p24 and SIV p27 Gag antigen quantification; and a variety of related reagents, services, and consultative support.
Molecular Support Services include support for quantitative realtime PCR with an 7500FAST machine, optimized HIV and cellular primer/probe sets and reagents; support for primer design and analysis of custom targets; target quantification on a customized basis; and related services.
The core also offers High Density Sequencing Support using Roche 454 or Solexa/Illumina pyrosequencing and bioinformatic technology. This powerful emerging technology is ideally suited to complex genetic populations like HIV, and this Core service has been established under leadership of Dr. Rick Bushman to facilitate its application in HIV-related research on campus.
Single Genome Amplification Services include consultation and hands-on training for investigators who are interested in amplifying single templates of their pathogen (e.g., HIV/SIV, HCV, Plasmodium, bacteria) of interest without the risk of PCR artifacts. This core service is offered by Dr. Frederic Bibollet-Ruche and Dr. Beatrice Hahn.
Finally, the Core provides a BSL-3 Lab Facility and Training Program to ensure safe conduct of HIV research, under leadership of Dr. Luis Montaner. The Core will also assist in identifying or providing suitable laboratory containment space for CFAR investigators who require but do not otherwise have an appropriate biosafety containment lab available.