The Baylor-UTHouston CFAR Clinical Research Core has maintained a proactive approach to facilitating interdisciplinary HIV/AIDS translational research that has produced over 70 peer-reviewed publications of Baylor-UTHouston CFAR investigators as well as numerous abstract presentations and publications. The Co-Directors are Dr. William T. Shearer (Pediatric Component) and Dr. Roberto C. Arduino (Adult Component). The goals of the Core are to: (1) Provide integrated access to pediatric and adult patient HIV-infected populations and clinical materials;(2) Facilitate novel research, targeted research projects, and scientific programs in critical areas of HIV/AIDS research;(3) Establish community outreach and educational programs to expand CFAR research opportunities;and (4) Assist investigators with interpretation of HIV study data. The sources of well-characterized patient populations and clinical materials are the Pediatric HIV Research Center at Texas Children's Hospital and the Houston AIDS Research Team site at Thomas Street Health Center (Baylor and UTHouston) where adult patients are seen. More than 100 children and 3000 adults are followed;NIH-funded HIV research programs support clinical studies on these patients (IMPAACT, PHACS, INSIGHT and ACTG). The Veterans Affairs Medical Center is another source of HIV-infected adults (over 700 patients). Core services include providing information on patient populations and assisting with procurement of specimens. A Core Oversight Committee reviews and prioritizes requests (concept sheets) for access to patients or specimens. The Core collects, processes, and stores patient research materials for approved studies. The Core will assist investigators in gaining access to the PHACS national database and its centralized specimen repository. Locally, specimens from selected adult patients are banked for research studies. The Core provides crucial support to new efforts to target translational research into areas that are gaps at our CFAR and that encourage interactions among CFAR cores and CFAR members at Baylor and UTHouston. Several recent examples are described in which the Core fostered innovative collaborative studies. The Core works with community groups, sponsors clinical conferences, and disseminates information to promote CFAR research opportunities. Outcomes measures will be used to assess the success of the Core each year.
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 Clinical Research Core provides expertise on clinical trials and access to patient samples.
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