September 27, 2010

Emory hosts global AIDS vaccine conference

The Emory Center for AIDS Research puts Atlanta in the international spotlight this week as it serves as local host for AIDS Vaccine 2010, the world’s only scientific meeting on HIV vaccine research. AV2010 takes place Sept. 28 – Oct. 1 at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center.  

Nearly 1,100 researchers, funders, policy makers and advocates from around the world will focus on advances in the search for a safe and effective HIV vaccine. More than 500 scientific presentations will detail progress and challenges in the field. Key sessions and press conferences from AIDS Vaccine 2010 will be webcast.

AV2010 is organized by the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, an alliance of 19 independent research, funding, advocacy and stakeholder organizations around the world dedicated to accelerating the development of an HIV vaccine.

“As a global leader in HIV vaccine research, Emory University is pleased to welcome our colleagues from around the world for this important overview of the latest research advances and challenges in the field,” says conference chair Eric Hunter, co-director of the Emory Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) and a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar.

“AIDS Vaccine 2010 takes HIV vaccine research a significant step forward, with presentations of the latest research in HIV infection, the interaction of the virus with the immune system, vaccine design and development and clinical research,” Hunter says.  
Conference co-chairs are James Curran, dean of the Rollins School of Public Health and CFAR co-director; Carlos del Rio, Hubert chair in Rollins’ Department of Global Health and CFAR co-director; Harriet Robinson, senior vice president of research and development at GeoVax and former director of the division of microbiology and immunology at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center.

HIV is responsible for more than 50,000 new infections each week globally and for more than 2.5 million new infections each year, with 33 million people now living with the disease.

Since the disease was first recognized in 1981, it has claimed over 25 million lives worldwide, making a safe, effective, accessible HIV vaccine a top priority in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Despite setbacks and challenges, scientists believe such a  vaccine is critically important in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

CFAR is one of 20 National Institutes of Health-funded centers across the United States. More than 120 investigators at Emory and its Atlanta partner institutions are focused on clinical, prevention, vaccine and basic science HIV/AIDS research. The Emory Vaccine Center and its Hope Clinic and Yerkes support pre-clinical and clinical HIV vaccine research programs. 

AIDS Vaccine 2010 is sponsored by the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise, the Georgia Research Alliance, ANRS, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, the Office of AIDS Research of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the Public Health Agency of Canada, Sanofi Pasteur, UNAIDS: The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, the U.S. Military HIV Research Program, and the Wellcome Trust.

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