Collaboration between DBT and ICMR was initiated through an MoU during 2007 to promote research in the HIV/AIDS and Microbicides area involving investigators from academia and research laboratories to design HIV antigens/antibodies/drugs/microbicides. The MoU was further extended during September, 2012 to pave the way for collaborative biomedical research and development of affordable technologies. One of such initiatives is the DBT-ICMR collaborative programme on “HIV/AIDS and Microbicides” which led efforts towards basic and translational research on immunopathogenesis of HIV and seeded efforts in development of therapeutic strategies. The 2nd phase of the programme has been taken up to accelerate the research efforts.
The overall objectives of the programme are
Two subgroups are currently operational viz., Clinical Research Consortium and Natural Product Consortium on HIV/AIDS and Microbicides. Recently, pre-proposals were invited from interested researchers to study intricate relationships between HIV pathogenesis and immune defense in Long Term Non-Progressors (LTNPs) elite controllers (EC), HIV-Exposed Sero-negative (HESN) and High Risk Sero-negative cohorts.
Significant achievements made during the phase I of the programmes are as follows: