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Investigators and Program Directors

Barbara Weiser and Harold Burger

Barbara Weiser, Research Physician, Wadsworth Center, Bloodborne Diseases
M.D., University of Pittsburgh
Postdoctoral training, UCSF and Stanford University

Harold Burger, Research Physician, Wadsworth Center, Viral Diseases
Ph.D., The Rockefeller University; M.D., Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Postdoctoral training, Stanford University

Research Interests

The interests of the HIV Research Laboratory are focused on identifying molecular determinants of HIV pathogenesis. Two main areas are under study: HIV tropism, a viral characteristic that determines which portal of entry HIV uses to enter and infect human cells, and HIV disease progression. In order to study the viral determinants of HIV disease progression and response to antiretroviral therapy in infected individuals, samples from well-characterized HIV-1-infected persons are analyzed to determine HIV-1 sequence and viral phenotype. Recent studies have focused on sequencing full-length HIV RNA genomes isolated from patient plasma and genital tract during primary HIV infection to study their role in pathogenesis. In addition, a novel, sensitive, nucleic acid-based assay was developed to determine HIV tropism in patient samples and is in use to investigate HIV coreceptor usage as a predictor of disease progression and theraputic response

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