Emory experts take on the HIV paradox

Emory's Eric Hunter led the effort to land a major grant that will help researchers across disciplines combine forces in the push for an HIV vaccine. 

Less than a month after the Rollins epidemiology study was released, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced that it was awarding a five-year, $35.6 million grant to the Emory Consortium for Innovative AIDS Research in Nonhuman Primates (CIAR-NHP). The consortium is a collaboration of scientists and investigators from an array of disciplines—from immunology to pathology to biostatistics—who’ve come together with the common goal of developing an effective, lasting vaccine for HIV.

“It’s an indication of the quality of research that is going on here,” says Eric Hunter, professor of pathology at the School of Medicine and the Emory Vaccine Center and the grant’s coprincipal investigator. “We have to be tackling this from multiple angles. This grant is going to give us the resources to really explore approaches that are going to move the vaccine field forward, because it involves multiple investigators from multiple viewpoints.” Dr. Hunter is a faculty member in the IMP and MMG programs.

The grant’s other coprincipal, Rama Rao Amara, professor of microbiology and immunology and a researcher at Yerkes, says the team will focus on the twofold goal of cultivating a vaccine that will prevent HIV and finding a long-term cure for people who are already infected. Dr. Amara is an IMP faculty member.

Guido Silvestri, professor of pathology and laboratory medicine and division chief of microbiology and immunology at Emory’s Yerkes National Primate Research Center, was also mentioned in the story. Dr. Silvestri is a faculty member in the IMP program.

Click here to view the full story in the Emory Magazine.