The award came after the federal agency chose Ohio State’s HIV/AIDS Clinical Trials Unit to be a member of its restructured HIV/AIDS research network following a painstaking selection process.
“We have been a successful member of the Institute’s AIDS Clinical Trials Group since 1987 and have participated in a wide range of therapeutic studies evaluating various treatment strategies for HIV infection and its related complications,” says principal investigator Dr. Susan Koletar (43212), director of the Ohio State program.
“As part of this national network, we have helped alter the standard of care for HIV infected individuals, resulting in dramatic decreases in the illness and death associated with the disease.”
The NIAID recently reorganized its AIDS clinical trials research network and required its existing members to compete with new applicants for participation in the new network.
“It was rigorous competition with more than 600 applications worldwide,” says Koletar, a physician who specializes in HIV and AIDS and who has directed Ohio State’s AIDS Clinical Trials Unit since 2002.
“I am privileged to work with an experienced and dedicated group of co-investigators and research staff,” she says. “The success of our application to continue as part of NIAID’s AIDS Clinical Trials Group was based on our history of excellence in the design and implementation of HIV therapeutic trials.”
The seven-year grant provides $1.7 million for the first year. Subsequent annual funding depends on the number of patients who enter the trials.
“We typically have good participation in our trials, so the total award could be nearly $12 million after seven years,” Koletar says.
The AIDS Clinical Trials Group network consists of 53 clinical research sites throughout the United States and internationally. Selecting the participating centers involved a meticulous scientific review of each center’s proposed clinical programs and capabilities, including access to those most affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic, particularly women, children, adolescents and people of diverse ethnic or racial backgrounds.
NIAID is part of the National Institutes of Health.