The Penn CFAR Clinical Core (Core C) forms the central nexus for clinical, translational and patient sample-based interdisciplinary HIV research conducted by CFAR investigators. Its supports and encourages innovative HIV science conducted in multiple programmatic areas through quick access to a broad range of epidemiologic data and clinical material from HIV infected individuals characterized in detail, identification of HIV infected individuals for recruitment into cross sectional or longitudinal studies, and by providing education, mentoring and overall leadership. To carry out this mission the Clinical Core (1) Maintains an Adult/Adolescent Database comprised of over 3000 patients cared for at four adult HIV practices and one adolescent (behaviorally infected) practice, and a Pediatric Database including longitudinal data on 275 perinatally infected children;(2) Maintains both Adult/Adolescent and Pediatric Specimen Repositories linked to the Databases, and supplies investigators with fresh patient material, including large volumes of cells collected by phlebotomy or apheresis, genital secretions, gastrointestinal lymph tissue, peripheral adipose tissue biopsies and cerebrospinal fluid;(3) Provides consultation in design and execution of clinical/translational studies, and laboratory technician assistance with processing, storage, and shipment of clinical specimens;(4) Provides mentorship to trainees and junior faculty and directs educational activities. These services have evolved over the current funding cycle in response to changing scientific needs, opportunities and research priorities identified through proactive strategic planning, user feedback, and input from internal and external expert advisors. In the coming funding cycle we will further enhance support to HIV/AIDS investigators to meet current needs as well as lead the research agenda based on national and CFAR scientific priorities: We have (a) worked with the City of Philadelphia to make Department of Health data available to investigators to study linkage to and retention in care;(b) developed a web based interface so that CFAR investigators can independently access and download data in the Adult/Adolescent Database, and (c) enhanced the availability of large volumes of high-value PBMCs through procurement of apheresis products. Finally, we will support the CFAR Scientific Working Groups focused on HIV/Hepatitis Co-Infection, HIV/Substance Use and Eradication and Functional Cure through expansion and coordination of services responsive to their scientific agendas.

Public Health Relevance

The Clinical Core of the Penn Center for AIDS Research supports interdisciplinary HIV science by offering investigators access to data on a large cohort of patients with HIV infection, and to patient samples, including blood and other body tissues. The Clinical Core also supports investigators through consultation services, use of the CFAR Clinical Laboratory, and education and mentoring activities

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAI1)
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University of Pennsylvania
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