Support for the HIV Symposium entitled "Hormone Regulation of the Mucosal Environment in the Reproductive Tract and the Prevention of HIV Infection" is requested. This Symposium will take place as a part of ISIR2013 which is the 12th Meeting of the International Society for Immunology of Reproduction (ISIR) conjoined with the 33rd annual Meeting of American Society for Reproductive Immunology (ASRI) on May 28 - June 1, 2013 in Boston, MA. Hosted by ASRI, this conference brings together the world's best scientists and clinicians in reproductive immunology. Our proposed HIV Symposium will bring leaders in HIV research and reproductive immunology into contact to exchange information, identify gaps, and explore avenues of collaboration. Based on the current controversy with regard to the role of contraception in HIV acquisition and transmission, the overall objective of our workshop is to emphasize the importance of exogenous and endogenous hormones and the mucosal environment of the reproductive tract in HIV transmission.
Specific Aims are designed to: 1) Discuss the role of sex hormones (endogenous and exogenous) in enhancing and/or suppressing mucosal immune protection against HIV transmission. 2) Define the role of the mucosal environment (secreted and tissue) in the reproductive tract in preventing or enhancing HIV acquisition/transmission of HIV infection. 3) Identify those factors (microbiome, STIs, semen, trauma) that are hormonally modulated in the FRT and may influence susceptibility to HIV infection. 4) Encourage collaborative activity between HIV researchers and reproductive immunologists with special emphasis on new investigators, trainees and under-represented groups. This HIV Symposium will have a special focus in that it will provide a unique opportunity for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and under-represented groups to meet and interact with leaders in the field of HIV transmission and reproductive immunology. This application supports a long-term goal of the ISIR and ASRI, which is to foster training of junior investigators An additional goal of this conference is to have each of the invited speakers submit a review/article on the subject of their conference presentation for publication in a Special Issue o the American Journal of Reproductive Immunology. Our proposed Symposium will lead to enhanced microbicide, PrEP and vaccine prevention strategies by understanding the interactions between the genital mucosa and HIV to better promote inhibition of HIV transmission and acquisition.
An urgent need exists to prevent the sexual transmission of HIV-1 to women. Worldwide, approximately 70% of all new cases are spread by sexual intercourse, with women more likely to be infected than men. The goal of this Symposium is to develop a clear understanding of how sex hormones and chemical contraceptives (oral preparations, subcutaneous implants, and vaginal rings) and the mucosal environment of the reproductive tract influence HIV transmission. By having this Symposium as a part of ISIR2013 in Boston, MA, our proposed HIV Symposium will bring leaders in HIV research and reproductive immunology into contact to exchange information, identify gaps, and explore avenues of collaboration.