CIRM HIV/AIDS Research Institutions

Hospitals and Universities in California and Washington State

The City of Hope Hospitals and the Beckman Research Institutes

Their names are used interchangeably.  Each have multiple locations throughout California.

$19,354,473   total – CIRM grants for AIDS Cure

total includes all the CIRM / City of Hope HIV Disease Team on that page

Beckman Research Institute

The Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope is responsible for fundamentally expanding the world’s understanding of how biology affects diseases such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and diabetes.

 Fred Hutchinson

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center – devoted to cure AIDS.   A partner w/National Institutes of Health and City of Hope in L.A.

 $20 Million National Institutes of Health Grant

  • SEE our Defeat HIV page for a longer list of HIV/AIDS research at Fred Hutch.

Fred Hutchinson Center’s HIV/AIDS Research. (Click the “Cure” tab.)

Pursuing cell and gene therapy for HIV cure – Using a $20 million National Institutes of Health grant Fred Hutch scientists are conducting research to develop cell and gene therapies for making an HIV-infected person’s own immune cells resistant to HIV infection. Led by Drs. Keith Jerome and Hans-Peter Kiem, the researchers are also developing proteins that can target and disable HIV in the viral reservoirs that sustain infection in the body. More information on the team’s research and clinical studies is available at defeatHIV.

Exploring stem-cell transplantation with or without cancer – Using various types of low-dose chemotherapy combined with or without radiation, Fred Hutch researchers are exploring stem-cell transplantation as an option for a cure for people who are HIV-positive and who may or may not have cancer. Learn more about open clinical trials.

Hutch Articlefred hutch timothy ray brownTimothy Ray Brown: the accidental AIDS icon.”  Excerpt:  Among the groups hosting the question-and-answer session are Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the community advisory board of defeatHIV, one of three federally funded consortiums nationwide investigating different strategies for an HIV cure.  Based at Fred Hutch, defeatHIV is using Brown’s cure as a blueprint for a new therapy involving modifying an HIV patient’s own stem cells to mimic the genetics of someone with natural resistance.  Brown, 48, is not only the inspiration for the Fred Hutch approach but the reason the three consortiums exist. Until his case, research into an HIV/AIDS cure had stalled. A cure seemed so unlikely that few people even said the word out loud.

Brown’s case changed that – but it hasn’t always been a smooth path.   “My recovery was complicated,” Brown said in a telephone interview last month. “I became delirious and had to have a brain biopsy done. I’ve been left with some neurological problems that require ongoing care.  My life is far from perfect,” he added. “But it is still my life.”

Video.  “The Berlin Patient.”  Bone marrow transplant.  He sparked new research. Genes may cure AIDS.  Marrow cells.  A cure is inevitable. Watch, The First Man Cured of HIV meeting with Seattle scientists to re-create cure.

Hutch Article“HIV Cure: From Pipe Dream To Promising.”  Excerpt:  Why talk about a cure of any kind when antiretroviral therapy has been so successful? Because not everyone can tolerate the drugs and not everyone has access to them or takes them regularly.

ucsf_sig_rgbU.C. San Francisco AIDS Research Institute (ARI)

$2,505,089 CIRM Grant

Cure Research Initiatives

The AIDS Research Institute coordinates and integrates all AIDS research activities at the University of California, San Francisco. We stimulate innovation and support interdisciplinary collaboration aimed at all aspects of the epidemic domestically and around the world. Bringing together hundreds of scientists and more than 50 programs from throughout the university and affiliated institutions, and working in close collaboration with affected communities, the ARI represents one of the premier AIDS research entities in the world. The ARI also provides administration for the Laboratory of Clinical Virology.

July 2015.  “In CRISPR Advance, Scientists Successfully Edit Human T Cells. Research Has Implications for Autoimmune Diseases, AIDS, Cancer.”

July 2015.  “Advances in Human T Cell engineering using CRISPR Cas9.” – Innovative Genomics Initiative – IGI.

A team led by IGI Affiliate Alex Marson (UCSF) and IGI Executive Director Jennifer Doudna (UC Berkeley, Berkeley Lab, HHMI)[Howard Hughes Medical Institute]  has devised a new strategy to precisely modify human immune-system “T cells” using CRISPR/Cas9 technology.  In their new paper, Generation of knock-in primary human T cells using Cas9 ribonucleoproteins, in PNAS today, the team reports that they have established a programmable tool to replace specific nucleotide sequences in the genome of mature immune cells.

Using a novel approach, the scientists were able to disable a protein on the T-cell surface – CXCR4 – which can be exploited by HIV when the AIDS virus infects T cells.  By introducing the Cas9 protein pre-complexed with a guide RNA into human T cells (using transient electroporation), these active protein/RNA complexes allowed the team to delete the HIV co-receptor (CXCR4).  The protein/RNA complexes also enabled the first successful Cas9-mediated correction of specific genome sequences in human T cells.

The use of CRISPR/Cas9 technology to facilitate genome engineering in human T cells has been a major challenge for the field.   T cell genome engineering holds great promise for cell-based therapies for cancer, HIV, primary immune deficiencies, and autoimmune diseases – and this achievement provides a versatile new research tool to understand T cell function, as well as a path toward CRISPR/Cas9-based therapies for many other serious human health issues.

Press Release:
In CRISPR Advance, Scientists Successfully Edit Human T Cells –
Research Has Implications for Autoimmune Diseases, AIDS, and Cancer

AAAS/EurekAlert | UCSF Press Release | July 27, 2015

Media Contact:
Pete Farley | | 415-502-6397

UCLA aidsU.C. Los Angeles AIDS Institute

$12,078,894  CIRM Grant

Clinical Therapeutics & Biomedical Prevention

The Clinical Therapeutics and Biomedical Prevention Program Section is lead by AIDS Institute Associate Director Ronald Mitsuyasu, MD, and is subdivided into 3 program areas:  Microbicides and Other Biomedical Prevention; HIV Immunopathogenesis and Vaccine Concept Development; and HIV Therapeutics.

The Three Program Areas

  1. The Microbicides and Other Biomedical Prevention section is lead by Dr. Pamina Gorbach and Dr. Raphael Landovitz. The section focuses on the study of, optimization of, and implementation science around new prevention technologies being considered for inclusion in combination HIV prevention interventions such as vaginal and rectal microbicides, Antitretroviral Therapy as prevention (Treatment as Prevention [TasP]), Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), and post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP).
  2. The Immunopathogenesis and Vaccine Concept Development program area, under the leadership of Dr. Otto Yang and Dr. Benhur Lee facilitates inter-disciplinary interest in vaccine development and encourages collaboration on grant applications in all areas related to immunopathogenesis.
  3. The HIV Therapeutics area works to strengthen research in all areas of HIV therapy including research on complications and side effects of therapy.  This program section is lead by Dr. Karen Nielsen of Pediatrics and IMPAACT and Dr. Judith Currier of the CARE Center and the ACTG.

In addition to these focused sections, the Clinical Therapeutics and Biomedical Prevention Program includes the Clinical Research Facilitation CFAR Core L and the Mucosal Immunology CFAR Core I and also the HIV/AIDS Research Study Volunteer Project.

Related Links/Resources