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CORE SERVICES

The UMMS CFAR Translational Medicine Core is directed by Drs. Katherine Luzuriaga and Thomas Greenough and is composed of a Clinical Sciences Core and a Clinical Immunology Core. The Clinical Sciences Core is responsible for providing services that support the design, implementation, regulatory compliance, and biostatistical analysis of patient-oriented and translational research.  Additional key services provided by the Clinical Sciences Core include sample processing, storage and shipping, and data management.  Plasma, cell and virus samples that comprise an extensive repository with linked, de-identified clinical information are available for CFAR members. By providing services and support, the Clinical Core reduces the interval between experimental concept and the implementation of clinical studies.  The Clinical Immunology Core provides protocols, reagents, and services for studies involving immunological assays.  In addition, the Clinical Immunology Core is actively involved in training and assay development.  We partner with the UMMS Flow Cytometry Core to maintain a highly utilized Biosafety Level 3 flow cytometry and sorting facility

The Clinical Investigation Core of the UMMS Center for AIDS Research offers numerous services and reagents.  It is composed of the Clinical Sciences Core and the Clinical Immunology Core.

Clinical Sciences Core

Coordinates and Supports Clinical Research Studies

  • Study design and statistics.
    • The Biostatistical Analysis Core (BAC) provides essential statistical support to CFAR investigators to ensure successful implementation of basic and clinical HIV/AIDS-related research with the following Aims:
      (1) Provide collaborative expertise in the design of experiments, including basic science and laboratory research, clinical-based observational studies, and therapeutic trials.
      (2) Conduct statistical analyses to support exploratory, hypothesis generating research and to facilitate generation of preliminary data for proposal development.
      (3) Assist in manuscript and abstract preparation and development of future research proposals. 
  • Human subjects. 
    • Assistance with IRB applications and reporting.
  • Regulatory compliance
    • Assistance with IBC registrations and reporting.
  • Dangerous goods shipping.
  • Whole blood processing, cryopreservation, and storage of study samples. 

Clinical Sciences Repository and Database

  • A collection of plasma and PBMC samples from numerous pediatric and adult studies with linked, de-identified clinical data. 
    • Provided to CFAR Investigators on request, after review and approval.
  • Participation in Cross-CFAR Specimen Repository (http://depts.washington.edu/cfas/cfar/core/crc/CFAR_sites.html).
  • Database
    • Assistance with MICARD queries to identify cohorts
    • Identification of HIV-1-infected adults who have consented to be approached for studies
    • Data retrieval for specimens in repository.

Clinical Immunology Core

Immunology Services

  • Coordination with Flow Cytometry Core for sorting and analysis of unfixed and infected human samples in BSL-3 laboratory: http://www.umassmed.edu/facslab/instrument.aspx.
  • Flow cytometry training and assistance with assay development.
  • Basic and multiparameter flow cytometry assays performed.
  • B-Lymphoblastoid cell lines generation and storage in repository.
  • HIV-1 serology assays performed (ELISA AND WB)
  • P24 assays performed; kits and reagents available (P24 antigen, ELISA plate)
  • Immunology protocol assays, information and training
    • Cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) assays
    • Intracellular cytokine assays
    • ELISPOT
    • Antigen specific proliferation
    • Antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity
    • HIV-1 neutralization

Tetramer Core

  • Peptide Class I MHC reagents made to order for detection and characterization of epitope-specific CD8+ T-cells (Tetramer or monomer)

HLA Typing

  • Low and high-resolution determination of Class I MHC haplotypes
  • Assay performed – low resolution
  • Assay performed – high resolution

HIV-1 Monitor Test (DNA detection/quantitation)

  • Assay performed