Welcome to the Penn Center for AIDS Research
The Penn Center for AIDS Research (Penn CFAR) is one of 20 NIH-funded CFARs and includes HIV and AIDS investigators at the University of Pennsylvania, the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), and the Wistar Institute.
The Penn CFAR's mission is to support, encourage and facilitate research in all areas of HIV/AIDS on the Penn/CHOP/Wistar campus by (a) facilitating communication and interdisciplinary collaborations through workshops, working groups, strategic planning efforts, and a seminar series covering all topics in the field; (b) support innovative pilot research in HIV/AIDS through developmental pilot grant programs including nonhuman primate-based research; (c) mentoring and support of junior investigators; (d) services and training in support of HIV research through Shared Cores: Clinical, Viral/Molecular, Immunology, Biostatistics & Data Management; Behavioral and Social Sciences; International; Nonhuman Primate.
The Penn Center for AIDS Research is happy to announce a new funding mechanism available to junior faculty CFAR investigators (Instructor and Assistant Professor or equivalent) to obtain targeted data needed for resubmission of a scored grant, or other critical needs that will result in a stronger HIV research grant or related goals. This should be limited to key essential resources for which no other support is available. These grants will be implemented in FY2019, and will be subject to rigorous evaluation and review by the Developmental and Administrative Cores.
Please see the Microgrant Program page for more details.
Red Ribbon Award Nominations:
Have you ever wanted to tell someone thank you in a very public way? You know the “you are doing a great job and I see you” kind of way. The kudos, well done, no one does it quite like you kind of way. If so, here is your chance to nominate that someone you think deserves to be recognized for the extraordinary things they do in the fight to prevent and treat HIV whether it be a researcher, policymaker, faith leader, community activist, or young person. The Penn CFAR CAB is seeking nominations for its Annual Red Ribbon Awards celebration and you can help. Complete the form and send in by July 15, 2019.
Your nomination can be among the many heroes of the past we have honored:Dr. James Hoxie; John Cella; Dr. Loretta Jemmott; David Acosta; Rev. Marguerite Handy; Ms. Pearl Gould; Jose Benitez; Duerward “Woody” Beale; Honorable Marian Tasco; Dale Grundy; to name just a few who have come before us.
We can’t wait to see all of the names of the wonderful people you choose. Now go NOMINATE YOUR HERO by clicking HERE.
Samuel Weissman of the O’Doherty Lab won second place in this year's Regeneron Science Talent Search, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors. The award includes $175,000 in prize money. Dr. O'Doherty met Sam through her son Liam. "Sam [a friend of Liam] started pestering me to volunteer in my lab several years ago. I was admittedly reluctant, but Sam soon proved useful. After learning to code in R, he developed methods to analyze longitudinal HIV sequences." Read more HERE.
- Recent News
José Bauermeister, Presidential Professor of Nursing and Director of the CFAR Technologies to Reduce HIV Disparities Scientific Working Group, has developed an online tool designed to decrease sexual risk-taking and promote HIV/STI prevention behaviors among young gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (YGBMSM), many of whom frequently meet their partners online.
Dr. Drew Weissman, who has developed nucleoside-modified mRNA-lipid nanoparticle (LNP) as a novel platform for vaccines, showed that the vaccine and LNPs specifically induce high levels of T follicular helper cells (Tfh). Tfh cells form germinal centers (GC) and drive GC B cells to proliferate, somatically mutate, class switch, and form long-term memory, which are critical for HIV vaccine development. In addition to HIV, the vaccine platform has applications to many different viral, bacterial, and parasitic pathogens.
Dr. Mohamed Abdel-Mohsen and a multidisciplinary team from Wistar, Penn and several other institutions, found that CD32, previously implicated as a marker of the HIV latent reservoir, is actually expressed preferentially on a subset of activated CD4+ T cells enriched for transcriptionally active HIV. This has important implications for identifying and targeting HIV latency in infected people.
Dr. Laura Su and an international, transdisciplinary team have authored an article in Science Immunology that focuses on how follicular helper T cells (Tfh) play an essential role in shaping B-cell mediated antibody responses. The Su lab employed mass cytometry and TCR sequencing to directly examine the Tfh response to HIV and reported oligoclonal expansion of a functionally-restricted subset of Tfh cells in HIV infected lymph nodes. This lack of polyfunctionality may contribute to Tfh cell pathology in HIV infection and correlated with impaired isotype switching of B cells in the lymph nodes.
- HIV Grand Rounds
12:00- 1:00 pm, Class of '62 Auditorium, John Morgan Building (unless otherwise posted)
- HIV / Pathogenesis CURE Journal Club
Every Other Thursday (starting again 9/20/18)
1:30- 3:00 pm, Room 501, Johnson Pavilion
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