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National Institute of Allergy and
Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
http://www.niaid.nih.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, April 25, 2008

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NIAID MEDIA AVAILABILITY
NIAID Seeks Research Ideas for Funding Initiatives in Vaccine Discovery and HIV Prevention

WHAT:

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is seeking broad input to spur new ideas and approaches in the areas of vaccine discovery research and HIV prevention research through two new “Requests for Information” (RFI). An RFI is a comment-gathering tool used by NIH to create defined, funded initiatives in targeted areas of research.

One of the RFIs, which builds upon input received at NIAID’s March 25 HIV Vaccine Summit, asks the scientific community (especially junior researchers and new faculty) healthcare professionals, patient advocates and the general public for ideas about the areas of basic research on which NIAID should focus to overcome the scientific obstacles to designing an effective HIV vaccine. Additionally, the RFI asks how best to address these research areas and attract new investigators and ideas from both within and outside the HIV vaccine field.

In the second RFI, NIAID asks the scientific community for novel research ideas for developing highly innovative strategies to prevent HIV transmission. The “HIT-IT” initiative will attempt to stimulate the discovery, design and early preclinical testing of cutting-edge approaches that could provide a variety of populations with tools for long-term protection from HIV infection. NIAID seeks comments on the types of new HIV studies that could lead to the development of new ways to prevent HIV acquisition. Comments are also sought on the types of prevention approaches that have already been sufficiently explored and, therefore, should not be considered in connection with this new initiative.

NIAID is accepting input on both RFIs until May 20, 2008.

WHERE: See the basic vaccine discovery research RFI and the HIT-IT RFI for details.
WHO: Carl W. Dieffenbach, Ph.D, director of NIAID’s Division of AIDS, and Margaret I. Johnston, Ph.D., director of NIAID’s Vaccine Research Program in the Division of AIDS are available to comment on these two initiatives.
CONTACT: To schedule interviews, contact the NIAID Office of Communications at (301) 402-1663, niaidnews@niaid.nih.gov.

NIAID conducts and supports research—at NIH, throughout the United States, and worldwide—to study the causes of infectious and immune-mediated diseases, and to develop better means of preventing, diagnosing and treating these illnesses. News releases, fact sheets and other NIAID-related materials are available on the NIAID Web site at www.niaid.nih.gov.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

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Last Updated April 25, 2008