Einstein-Rockefeller-CUNY Center for AIDS Research

Core Facilities

Cores directed by outstanding investigators and operated by highly experienced technical staff provide CFAR investigators with access to the training, specialized scientific services and sophisticated instruments required for cutting-edge and novel research. These Cores are dynamic, adding new services and instruments in response to the needs of CFAR investigators identified during our strategic planning process. A short summary of each core is provided below with more detailed information provided by clicking on the Core name.

Developmental Core: 

The Developmental Core expands the breadth and depth of HIV/AIDS research by providing mentoring and pilot project funding to develop the careers of ESI and to support the recruitment of non-HIV/AIDS researchers into HIV/AIDS research through a highly structured mentorship program involving one-on-one mentoring matching early-stage investigators with senior CFAR investigators and grant-targeted mentorship meetings of grant applicants with selected relevant senior CFAR investigators.

Clinical, Translational and Investigation Science Core: 

The Clinical, Translational and Implementation Science Core (CTISC) supports the initiation and expansion of HIV-related clinical, translational and implementation research by assisting researchers in recruiting participants for both clinical trials (e.g. eradication research or pathogenesis) and for observational studies by active recruitment of patients with rare phenotypes (e.g. elite or viremic controllers). It will utilize three robust clinical databases to identify well-characterized patients for recruitment, inform research assessing policy, contextual, clinic/practice and individual factors impacting uptake and outcomes of delivered services, and support access to and analysis of data. The three clinical databases are the Clinical Cohort, with over 16,000 HIV-infected and 285,000 HIV-negative patients cared for by Montefiore/Einstein clinical services, the Amida Care Cohort which leverages the informatics resources of Amida Care, the largest Medicaid Special Needs Plan in NYS, with >6,000 PLWH in NYC and the Master Research Cohort which has centralized data and specimen information from ~4700 participants in 31 funded research studies. CTISC maintains an infrastructure to facilitate recruitment and enrollment from all three cohorts into clinical trials, observational and translational studies requiring new specimens or special studies (e.g. functional MRI) in HIV-infected individuals with specified clinical characteristics.

Biomarkers & Advanced Technologies Core: 

This Core provides an extensive array of support services ranging from the measurement of a wide range of biomarkers to the molecular quantification of HIV DNA and RNA to the development and implementation of specialized high-throughput assays focused on supporting basic, translational, clinical, and epidemiological ERC-CFAR investigators engaged in the ERC-CFAR mission to prevent, treat, and eradicate HIV-1 infection. Among the services provided by the Core are analysis of sera, plasma, CSF, cervical-vaginal lavage fluid, tissue culture supernatants and cell lysates from humans, rodents and macaques for quantification of biomarkers such as cytokines/chemokines, growth factors and other mediators using high-throughput multiplex platforms and focused ELISAs. The Core also provides full support for a wide range of molecular assays for evaluating HIV infection including RT-qPCR and digital PCR for quantification of HIV viral RNA and DNA and for the quantification of the latent HIV-infected cell population. The BATC provides access to the Case Western CFAR Virology, Next Generation Sequencing and Imaging Core (http://casemed.case.edu/cfar/cores/virology) for support for studies requiring deep HIV sequencing and mutational analysis in laboratory and clinical isolates. The Core can produce large quantities of purified proteins in eukaryotic or prokaryotic expression systems for in vivo studies requiring large quantities of biological proteins including specific cytokines, chemokines and monoclonal antibodies.

Behavioral Sciences Core: 

The Behavioral Science Core (BSC) facilitates the development and implementation of interdisciplinary, theory-driven, rigorous behavioral and social science research that aligns bench, bedside and community to prevent new HIV infections and improve HIV care. It provides technical assistance on study design, qualitative and mixed methods through a new Qualitative Method Resource, access to the Cognitive Interview Lab, a new resource staffed by trained interviewers who can test new measures and evaluate whether existing measures fit new populations or purposes and advises on existing, and guides the development of new, biomarkers for behavioral outcomes including ART and PrEP adherence. It also leads the ERC-CFAR Community Participatory Partnership to partner with the community in the ERC-CFAR research program and to mentor ESI, community and clinical researchers in behavioral research methods and the engagement of the community in research studies.

Administrative Core: 

Utilizes an integrated governance structure including CFAR leaders, interdisciplinary faculty groups, as well as internal and external scientific advisory committees to lead and advise the CFAR and coordinate the CFAR strategic planning process including organizing the annual CFAR retreat. Serves as the central focus of interactions with the Institution regarding recruitment and requests for institutional support for HIV/AIDS research, coordinates financial management of the scientific Co res, and organizes internal and external scientific seminars and symposia.

 

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ERC-CFAR at a Glance

Partner Institutions 

  • Albert Einstein College of Medicine
  • Rockefeller University
  • The City University of New York (CUNY)
 

Investigators 

Total ERC-CFAR members

  • 183 Full members
  • 10 Affiliate members

CFAR member trainees funded by NIH K awards

  • 15 Full members
 

NIH Funding 

FY2015 OAR NIH AIDS FRB grants

$34,084,840 Total costs

 

New NIH AIDS grants awarded in FY2016

$7,345,645 Total annual costs

 

FY2014 non-AIDS NIH grants

$34,745,334 Total costs

Publications (first 6 months of 2016) 

Total Publications: 240

Publications multi-authored
by ERC-CFAR members: 91

Cores 

Administrative 

Director: Dr. H. Goldstein

 

Developmental 

Directors: Dr. V. Prasad & Dr. C. Cunningham

 

Biomarkers & Advanced Technologies 

Directors: Dr. J. Berman & Dr. S. Almo

 

Behavioral Science 

Director: Dr. L. Bauman

 

Clinical Translational Implementation Science 

Director: Dr. K. Anastos

 

Scientific Working Groups 

HIV and Eradication 

Directors: Dr. G. Kalpana & Dr. M. Caskey

 

Patient and Population Health Outcomes Research 

Directors: Dr. D. Nash & Dr. J. Arnsten  

New 2016 NIH Grants Awards 

 
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In the Media

Vice interviews Harris Goldstein, M.D., about the difficulty of developing a vaccine for HIV. Dr. Goldstein is professor of pediatrics and of microbiology & immunology at Einstein and director of the Einstein-Rockefeller-CUNY Center for AIDS Research. (Wednesday, Aug 30, 2017)

Crain’s Health Pulse interviews Dr. Laurie Bauman regarding a collaborative study aimed at controlling the spread of HIV using PrEP, a drug proven to reduce risk. Dr. Bauman is a principal investigator on the study, which includes Einstein, Montefiore and Columbia. She also is director of the Preventive Intervention Research Center and professor of pediatrics. (Friday, Jul 29, 2016)

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