November 15, 2011
Dr. Seth Pincus of Children's Hospital in New Orleans has been awarded a $100,000 Grand Challenge Exploration grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. More than 100 scientists received the grants; Pincus is one of 13 getting first-round support to look at ways to address memory T-cells, one of several sites where HIV hides in the body even after drug treatment. Pincus' lab will create antibodies that target these HIV reservoirs and will set up procedures for tests on macaques at a Seattle primate lab, said hospital spokesperson Cathleen Randon. The Washington National Primate Research Center will send data on which Pincus will base decisions about whether the antibodies should undergo more testing as a possible treatment. Projects that perform well in first-round research can get up to $1 million in the second round of funding.