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May 2012 News from ADARC

Dear Friend,
Thank you for your support of ADARC's mission to find solutions to the HIV/AIDS epidemic through scientific research. We want to share some of the scientific progress taking place in our laboratories, and hope you will enjoy being a part of future breakthroughs.

New Research Study on Injection Drug Use   


Martin Markowitz, MDDr. Martin Markowitz, ADARC Professor and Clinical Director, has received a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to study the relationship between injection drug use and increased immune activation, which has been associated with cardiovascular disease, liver disease, kidney disease, aging, and HIV-1 disease progression.


The starting point of this project is data generated by a pilot study that HIV-infected injection drug users show increased immune activation not only systemically, but also in gut tissue. Scientists do not know why this happens - whether it is caused by the non-sterile injection, the opiates, or the presence of a chronic infection such as Hepatitis C. Finding the answer to this question is one of the goals of this study.


In collaboration with Sherry Deren, PhD from New York University College of Nursing and Saurabh Mehandru, MD from Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Dr. Markowitz will use the multidisciplinary approach of Systems Biology to analyze data collected from a clinical trial the Rockefeller University Hospital. The team will carefully recruit a selected cohort of active and former injection drug users, with and without HIV infection, and examine the behavioral and immunological correlates of increased immune activation in blood and tissue. Patients who are HIV-positive will be treated with antiretroviral therapy and monitored, so scientists can observe whether prior increased immune activation affects the effectiveness of treatment.


The ultimate goal is to learn from the impact of substance abuse to improve treatment outcomes for people living with HIV. More information about this clinical trial is available here.


You can support ADARC's clinical program. 



 Renewed Support to Study HIV-1 assembly process   



Paul Bieniasz, PhD has received renewed support from the National Institutes of Health to continue his studies on the assembly and release of HIV-1 particles, a process which is essential for the propagation of the virus between cells. This complex process involves several viral and cellular RNAs and proteins, whose function and mechanisms are only partially understood.  


Dr. Bieniasz's group will focus on the Gag protein, a major component of viral particles, and tetherin, a host antiviral protein that inhibits virus release. The experiments in this study will be the first to determine precisely how particular viral and host components interact with each other and with viral genomic RNA in infected cells and viral particles. Understanding HIV-1 particle assembly and release may help in the development of new therapies which can interfere with the virus' life cycle and treat HIV infection 


You can support Dr. Bieniasz's research. 




Academic Seminars   


Invited speakers share their work on HIV/AIDS with a scientific audience.

To attend, please email              

Tuesday, May 22 at 12pm


Ian Wilson, PhD - The Scripps Research Institute 


Structural Insights into HIV-1 Neutralization by New Highly Potent and Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies


Monday, June 11 at 12pm


Joel Palefsky, MD - University of California, San Francisco


Monday, June 18 at 12pm


Jeffrey D. Lifson, MD - NCI - Frederick National Laboratory

"Redeeming the Dream? Developing Nonhuman Primate Models for Evaluation of Antiretroviral Drug Suppression, Residual Virus and Eradication Startegies."  


In This Issue
Prevention Strategy
New Grant
Academic Seminars
Join Us 

Private support is vital to ADARC's mission - it allows rapid exploration of  new ideas before they can attract government funding. We count on your support to sustain an agile and creative research environment.

Please join us in the fight by sending your check to:

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New York, NY 10016
(212) 448-5089

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Thank you for your interest in ADARC's work. Our new institutional brochure, which summarizes our history, research programs and achievements is now available. You can read it online or to request a printed copy, please call (212) 448-5069.  
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