Research Agenda Feed

November 23, 2010


New Announcement about PrEP from NIH

By Carl W. Dieffenbach, Ph.D., Director of NIAID’s Division of AIDS


The National Institutes of Health National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases just made a significant announcement on pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). I am proud to share this important update from the NIH with our blog readers. Learn more by reading this Q&A.

October 19, 2010


Advancing Pediatric, Maternal and Child Health

Future Directions for National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Research

By Carl W. Dieffenbach, Ph.D., Director of NIAID’s Division of AIDS, Edward Handelsman, M.D., Chief of NIAID’s Pediatric Medicine Branch within the Division of AIDS, and Lynne Mofenson, M.D., Chief of the Pediatric, Adolescent and Maternal AIDS Branch within the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development.

As a result of our continued dialogue with our collaborators and stakeholders, NIAID is considering how best to address the HIV/AIDS research agenda for the maternal and pediatric populations within the Institute’s future clinical trial networks. Significant progress has been made in maternal and child health with the development of methods to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV. While these successes are quite evident in the developed world, there is still a sizeable implementation gap for maternal, pediatric and child health services within resource-limited settings. Looking ahead, there are still significant research areas that need to be addressed for these special populations. Specifically, we have identified the following six research priorities:

  • define optimal, safe drug doses for antivirals and anti-infectives (e.g. new tuberculosis medicines) used in infants, children, adolescents, as well as pregnant women and women who have recently given birth
  • management of HIV-related co-infections, co-morbidities and consequences of chronic antiretroviral drug exposure;
  • build on established findings involving prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and other associated infectious diseases;
  • target the prevention of HIV infection among adolescents in resource-limited and domestic settings through collaborative studies with other clinical trials networks;
  • improve diagnostics for use in children affected by HIV and associated diseases; and
  • evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of vaccines designed to protect against HIV and other infectious co-morbidities in infants, children, adolescents, pregnant women, and women who breastfeed their babies.

To address these scientific areas, NIAID has teamed with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), also part of the NIH, to support a stand-alone pediatric, maternal and child health leadership group in connection with the new clinical trial network structure. We believe that a dedicated leadership group would enable us to preserve the synergies between these areas of research while promoting efficiency and effective collaborations with other network leadership groups to achieve mutual goals. Additionally, we expect to use the revamped NIAID clinical research infrastructure to perform pediatric research involving other types of infectious diseases.

These topics among others will be discussed at an Oct. 26 townhall meeting in Arlington, Va. on the future of NIAID’s clinical trial networks. To register for the meeting, please visit:

September 16, 2010


NIAID to Host Public Meeting on Future HIV/AIDS Research Networks

Future Directions for National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Research

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the NIH will host a public meeting on Tuesday, October 26, 2010, in Arlington, Va., to examine the future of the Institute’s HIV/AIDS clinical trial networks. Currently, NIAID supports six HIV/AIDS networks; the awards supporting those networks are set to expire in 2013 and 2014.

NIAID aims to broaden the scope of the networks to include research for other infectious diseases of significance to people with or at risk for HIV infection, including tuberculosis and hepatitis. The future of NIAID’s HIV/AIDS clinical trial networks has been the topic of a continued series of blog posts here on

At the meeting, NIAID and its NIH collaborating partners will present key expectations for the future networks with a focus on potential changes in network structure, research priorities, collaborative opportunities and information about the upcoming application process. Ample time for questions and answers will be made available.

The meeting will be held from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST at the Crystal Gateway Marriott, 1700 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, Va. 22202. To register for the meeting, please visit: Exit Disclaimer. The registration form may also be used to submit questions in advance of the meeting.

Proceedings from the meeting will be videotaped and later posted to the NIAID Web site.

February 19, 2010


Highlights from the 2010 Conference on Retroviral and Opportunistic Infections

By Daniella Rivera, Fellow

PACHA Members

A week ago we blogged about ways to stay connected to the 17th Conference on Retroviral and Opportunistic Infections Exit Disclaimer (CROI). Since then, the world's premiere researchers and scientists have come together at the San Francisco Moscone Center to discuss advances and future directions in the prevention and treatment of HIV and AIDS. Throughout the conference (which ends today), conference organizers and participants have shared breaking news through Twitter (using the hashtag #CROI Exit Disclaimer), through webcasts and podcasts Exit Disclaimer of the sessions, and through email updates from AIDSMap Exit Disclaimer. From Washington, DC to India, Kenya and beyond, researchers and scientists have presented the latest findings on topics like global epidemiology, Human Genome sequencing and HIV-1, and reducing Mother to Child Transmission.

Continue reading "Highlights from the 2010 Conference on Retroviral and Opportunistic Infections" »

August 21, 2009


Testing HIV Drugs as Prevention

By Carl W. Dieffenbach, Ph.D., Director of NIAID Division of AIDS

Dr. Carl Dieffenbach, PhD

Dr. Carl Dieffenbach, PhD

Last year, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that the number of annual new HIV infections in the United States is actually 40% higher than previously estimated. This means that more than 56,000 Americans are infected with HIV every year despite public education efforts on how to avoid getting infected. Addressing the global HIV/AIDS pandemic is critical, but it’s clear that we need to re-examine our approaches and figure out additional ways to control and curtail the epidemic here in the United States.

At the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the NIH, we stand at the forefront of the nation’s HIV prevention research efforts. One of our goals is to develop new scientific strategies to prevent HIV transmission. We've had our share of successes and disappointments, like all areas of science, but we remain optimistic and are committed to ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Continue reading "Testing HIV Drugs as Prevention" »


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