The purpose of the International Research Core is to promote and facilitate translational HIV/AIDS research by Baylor-UTHouston CFAR members in international settings. Over the past 10 years, the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative (BIPAI), supported in part by the International Research Core, has grown from a small, laboratory-based program focused in Romania to encompass the world's largest network of pediatric and family HIV treatment and research centers with over 30,000 HIV-infected patients in care. These centers are linked with one another, and together they serve as a resource capable of facilitating collaborative HIV/AIDS research across nine distinct international settings in Romania, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Swaziland, Uganda, Tanzania, Burkina Faso, and Kenya. The International Research Core has been extraordinarily efficient and productive to date. The partnership with the Stefan Nicolau Institute of Virology in Bucharest has been a particular source of pride;our support for this relationship is reflected in our request for continued allocation of a substantial proportion of CFAR International Research Core funds to this partner. The CFAR International Research Core has contributed greatly to the success of the NIH-funded AIDS International Research and Training Program scholars. Other projects (such as the BANA 2 trial in Gaborone, Botswana) have been catalyzed by CFAR input and contributions. The CFAR International Research Core is now poised for exponential growth, as nearly limitless opportunities for epidemiological, operational, and clinical research can be realized through the newly implemented electronic medical records system. This electronic medical records system currently includes data on 30,000 patients in seven sites. This new tool has the potential to galvanize both retrospective and prospective research among existing core users and will attract additional new users to the core.
The Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) at Baylor-UTHouston supports research on the pathogenesis, prevention, detection, and treatment of HIV infection and AIDS. The CFAR has been an essential catalyst for HIV/AIDS research in the Houston area. The State of Texas ranks fourth in the total number of AIDS cases in the United States. The International Research Core provides infrastructure and capacity for international research at a network of sites in Africa and Romania.
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