On behalf of the leadership of the Duke Center for AIDS Research (CFAR), welcome to our new CFAR website. The intramural community of HIV/AIDS investigators represents the lifeblood of the Duke CFAR, so an effective line of open communications is essential to its overall vitality. This new website is the result of a great deal of input from both the CFAR leadership and the CFAR membership, and provides many new communication tools, including through social media.
As on July 1st, the new Duke CFAR is now in its 11th year of existence having just successfully recompeted our renewal application. Our CFAR has experienced much growth over the past ten years, with membership expanding from 74 members in 2005 to over 300 current members. True to its Core Mission of infrastructure support for the intramural HIV/AIDS research community at Duke, the CFAR has had many proud accomplishments. In partnership with the School of Medicine, the CFAR (through its Developmental Core) has invested over $2.3 million in support of 59 peer-reviewed Small Grant awards that have resulted in over $12.4 million in NIH 'first related awards 'from the NIH thus far, for an overall 'return on investment' of 5.3 for the period of 2005-2014. The Duke CFAR and School of Medicine also partnered in the recruitment and faculty development of 12 new HIV/AIDS investigators, including 8 women and 2 Presidential Early Career Award winners. Among the greatest overall strengths of the Duke CFAR are the Strategic Partnerships that have been established with over 20 different Institutes, Departments, and Centers at Duke. In partnership with the Department of Medicine (DOM), targeted RFAs were issued soliciting proposals in the research areas of 'HIV Cure' and 'HIV and Aging', resulting in the joint funding of 4 Small Grants to date. This CFAR/DOM co-funding initiative will serve as a model for similar targeted RFAs with our other Strategic Partners over the upcoming years.
As both our membership and support for pilot grant proposals have grown, so has the overall usage of the expanded services offered through our Cores. The expansion of the Flow Cytometry Core into a new full service Immunology Core, in Year 10, was the direct result of CFAR member feedback, and will make a greatly expanded array of unique technology platforms available to the larger community of Duke CFAR investigators for the very first time. Finally, the Annual CFAR Fall Scientific Retreat continues to serve as both the focal point of the CFAR research year as well as the main social opportunity for the entire CFAR membership to informally interact with one another. The past success of this event is the result of the continued support and participation by all of the CFAR members. As we move forward and perhaps also add a new and slightly different Spring CFAR event, we hope to build significantly on the accomplishments of the first ten years. We look forward our continued partnerships and unique collaborations with you the CFAR membership.
Kent J. Weinhold, Ph.D., Joseph W. and Dorothy W. Beard Professor of Surgery,