The 7.5-million grant from the NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases will help researchers pinpoint specific factors that lead to a better immune response through HIV vaccination.
Kristina de Paris, PhD, Associate Director, UNC CFAR’s HIV/STD Core, and professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology and colleagues were awarded a grant for their project entitled “Determinants of HIV broadly-neutralizing antibody precursor induction in infants.
The grant, sponsored by the NIH National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), will provide them with $7.5 million in funding over the next five years.
Using the grant, the research team will study changes in the infant rhesus macaque’s antibody response after receiving different HIV vaccine components called adjuvants. They will also be studying the interactions between host immunity and naturally occurring bacteria in the microbiome, in response to vaccination.
“Our goal is to identify innate and microbial factors that impact B cell lineage selection and maturation after vaccination,” said de Paris.
De Paris will be collaborating with Permar from Cornell University, Surana from Duke University, and van Gils from the University of Amsterdam to perform the study.