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September 14, 2020: Start of a DFG-funded HPI Africa cooperation

Monday, 14. September 2020

In the call for proposals "German-African Cooperation Projects in Infectiology" of the German Research Foundation (DFG), a joint German-African proposal was approved. In addition to the HPI, partners from South Africa, Kenya, Cameroon and Zimbabwe are involved. 

The aim of the joint research project is to gain new insights into the underlying mechanisms of HIV-1 pathogenesis and to be able to make statements about which viral and host factors affect the course of the HIV-1 infection in which way. The metabolic consequences of the HIV-1 infection on viral replication and on the immune system as well as on the immune development of HIV-exposed but not infected children are investigated.

The project will initially run for three years and will be funded with one Million Euros. Afterwards there is the possibility to renew it. Dr. Madeleine Bunders and Prof. Marcus Altfeld from the Department of Virus Immunology are co-spokespersons of the initiative.

"Our colleagues in Africa come from Zimbabwe, Cameroon, Kenya and South Africa. Five PhD students in Africa as well as one PhD student and one postdoc at the HPI will be funded," says Prof. Marcus Altfeld. "The characterization of the metabolic changes in HIV-1 infection will provide new insights into the mechanisms leading to the progression of HIV-1 disease and thereby advance the development of therapeutic interventions," explains Dr. Madeleine Bunders.