Research-for-Cure Academy

Francis Kiweewa

Nationality: Uganda
Institution: Makerere University Walter Reed Project
Country of work: Uganda

What is your motivation for engaging in HIV cure and remission research?

Although antiretroviral therapy (ART) has revolutionized HIV treatment, the current ART neither cures HIV nor completely restores the immune system. Currently ART is for life and sustaining it for all HIV infected people while at the same time addressing the associated long term toxicities presents significant challenges, especially for LMIC. I believe that a lasting solution to the HIV epidemic will be achieved with the discovery of either an HIV vaccine or HIV cure. While there is progress in HIV cure research, a full understanding of associated ethical issues need to be elucidated. These and other reasons inform my motivation.

What is your current area of research?

Selected current research support include evaluating the safety and Virologic effect of a human monoclonal antibody, VRC- HIVMAB060-00-ab (VRC01), with broad HIV-1 neutralizing activity, administered intravenously to adults during early acute HIV infection (RV398); assessing the role of administering antiretroviral therapy for Acute or Early HIV Infection (RV392); specimen collection to characterize immunity and viral reservoir in the blood, spinal fluid, rectal mucosa, genital mucosa, and lymph nodes of HIV infected and HIV uninfected adults in Africa (RV419); and characterizing HIV-1 Prevalence, Incidence, Cohort Retention, and Host Genetics and Viral Diversity in Cohorts in East Africa and Thailand (RV 217).