Application) This is a renewal application for an AIDS Institutional Training Grant (AITG) aimed at providing physicians and other scientists interested in HIV research with the proper training in laboratory disciplines critical to the pursuit of an independent career in HIV/AIDS research. The program includes nine faculty members, all affiliated with UCSF, with the majority of the research training taking place on the UCSF campus, or at the Cancer Center, San Francisco General Hospital, or the Gladstone Institute for Virology. The faculty offers a multi-faceted approach to HIV infection and includes expertise in immunology, virology, molecular biology and pathogenesis. There is also an emphasis on animal models, vaccine development and gene therapy. During the previous award period, the UCSF program had little problem recruiting several candidates every year and is in a good position and likely to continue to recruit strong candidates in the future. Trainees must have completed their clinical training and will be selected based on their capabilities to become independent investigators and their commitment to a career in research. Emphasis will be given to recruiting minority applicants. After acceptance into the program, the fellows and faculty will mutually agree upon a research preceptor who will be responsible for selecting research projects that will allow the fellow to learn laboratory techniques, design experiments, interpret results, and report the results in both written and oral presentations. The guidance of the preceptor will be supplemented with didactic training in selected topics, including molecular virology and statistics, through seminars, journal clubs, and research presentations. In addition, twice a year the trainees will meet as a group with the preceptors to exchange information. The progress of all trainees will be monitored by a Steering Committee composed of internal and external scientists who will meet with the fellows once a year.
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