new $21.3 million research grant focused on fighting HIV/AIDS in the family
setting "demonstrates the high quality of biomedical research being done in
South Africa and the United States' commitment to partnership in the struggle to
prevent HIV transmission and to expand the availability of effective AIDS
treatment in South Africa," said United States Ambassador Cameron R. Hume
at a ceremony today marking the announcement of the U.S. National Institutes of
Health's award to the Perinatal HIV Research Unit of the WITS Health Consortium.
Fighting HIV/AIDS in the family setting has previously not been extensively
Perinatal HIV Research Unit of the WITS Health Consortium in
the announcement, the United States Ambassador Cameron R. Hume noted that this
is the second CIPRA awarded to South African scientists within the last six
months, bringing the total funding for this program in
CIPRA award is a collaborative effort with the Universities of Witwatersrand,
on the award, Tommy G. Thompson, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services, said, "In areas such as
by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the CIPRA
program helps developing countries strengthen their HIV/AIDS infrastructure and
increase their capacity for research into promising methods of HIV prevention
and treatment. In
economic impact continues even after the death of family members from
AIDS," added Dr. McIntyre. "Many families will use a large proportion,
or all, of their remaining resources to cover burial costs. Also, with family
money gone, surviving members, including children, are often forced into crime
or sex work, which perpetuates the epidemic."
integrated projects funded under the CIPRA grant will:
evaluate HIV/AIDS treatments for adults and children in a family setting at
primary care levels
test whether treatment interruptions can reduce the progression to AIDS in
determine the efficacy of two standard childhood vaccines (used to prevent
pneumonia and meningitis) in preventing AIDS-related complications in infants
evaluate the community effect of highly active anti-retroviral therapy on
sickness and deaths due to AIDS and tuberculosis, and
evaluate simple, inexpensive methods to monitor disease progression and the
effectiveness of anti-retroviral therapy.
the quality of life for people living with HIV/AIDS is the key aim of this
project," NIAID Director Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., said. "Research in a
family context provides excellent opportunities to do that by offering social
support services, risk reduction messages and prophylaxis of opportunistic
infections. We believe this research ultimately will benefit the many families
living in the shadow of HIV/AIDS."
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious
Diseases (NIAID) is a component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
NIAID supports basic and applied research to prevent, diagnose, and treat
infectious and immune-mediated illnesses, including HIV/AIDS and other sexually
transmitted diseases, illness from potential agents of bioterrorism,
tuberculosis, malaria, autoimmune disorders, asthma and allergies.