Recent Presentation on “Substance Use in HIV Positive Adoloscents”

Mark Hart Uncategorized

April 26, 2013

GAINESVILLE, FLa.

The Southern HIV & Alcohol Research Consortium (SHARC) research team met to listen to presenters Julie Williams, Ph.D. and John Friary, MS, M.P.H., Wednesday, April 25.

Williams along with members of her team, Xinrui Zhang and Amanda Lowe, M.S., presented an overview of their clinical trial, “Substance Use in HIV Positive Adolescents.” This trial investigated data on biomarkers related to inflammation and HIV in adolescents with substance use, with the ultimate goal of identifying unique transcriptomic and proteomic profiles related to neurocognitive impairment in HIV positive youth. 

Williams is a postdoctoral associate in the Maureen M. Goodenow Laboratory in the Department of Pathology in the College of Medicine at the University of Florida.  She is researching the role of the psychoactive and immunomodulatory component of marijuana, THC, in HIV infection and inflammation in monocytes and macrophages.  Williams has received two Experimental Pathology Innovative grants.  The first to examine the role of microparticles in HIV infection and the second to examine the consequences of THC exposure and HIV infection on migration of HIV infected monocytes.

Friary, a biostatistician and project manager, gave an update on Dr. Cook’s pilot study, “Pharmacotherapy for Hazardous Drinking in HIV-infected Women: Randomized Trial.”  This trial was conducted in Chicago, IL., Jacksonville, FL. and Washington, D.C.

Alcohol Timeline Follow Back, a technique to improve participants’ recall of their drinking frequencies and amounts, was used to collect 10 months of drinking data on our participants. The changing drinking pattern of this cohort over the course of the study was presented.

Thanks to Dr. Wallet For His Presentation to the SHARC Research Team

Mark Hart Uncategorized

2012-06-26_15-02-10_6343-220x272Mark Wallet, Ph.D., presented his research with macrophages to the Southern HIV & Alcohol Consortium (SHARC) research team Thursday, March 11, 2013. 

Dr. Wallet received his undergraduate degree in biology and medical technology from Clarion University of Pennsylvania in 1998. He moved to Durham, NC where he worked as a medical technologist both at Duke University Medical Center and Durham County Health Department. In 2000, Dr. Wallet entered graduate school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Throughout his doctoral studies with mentor Roland Tisch, Dr. Wallet focused on the role of innate immune cells, particularly dendritic cells, upon development of T cell-mediated type 1 diabetes.

In 2007, Dr. Wallet joined the HIV-1 research group at the University of Florida led by Maureen Goodenow. As a postdoctoral fellow, his work focused on innate immune activation and systemic inflammation in HIV-1-infected individuals.

In 2012 Dr. Wallet attained a position as Assistant Professor in the Department of Pathology Immunology and Laboratory Medicine. His current laboratory interests include understainding molecular interactions of HIV-1 with human macrophages and the role that these interactions play in chronic inflammation experienced by HIV-1-infected individuals.

Curriculum Vitae

Meet the Team

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SHARC Executive Committee, Dr. Robert Cook, Dr. Maria Jose Miguez, Dr. Kendall Bryant, Dr. Babette Brumback and Dr. Seema Desai

SHARC Executive Committee, Dr. Robert Cook, Dr. Maria Jose Miguez, Dr. Kendall Bryant, Dr. Babette Brumback and Dr. Seema Desai

The Southern HIV Alcohol Research Consortium (SHARC) held the first Research Symposium in Gainesville to showcase research on HIV and Alcohol hosted by SHARC Director Robert Cook October 2012.

The symposium presenters discussed alcohol consumption associated with significant behavioral and biological outcomes in persons with HIV infection.  As Florida has the highest rate of newly-diagnosed HIV infections in the U.S.  Its epidemic is characterized by significant racial disparities and high-risk populations including men who have sex with men.  However, few effective strategies exist to help persons with HIV to reduce their drinking.

The symposium prsesenters were:

Kendall J. Bryant, Ph.D., Director, HIV/AIDS Research, NIAAA
Scientific Collaborator, Consortia for HIV/AIDS and Alcohol Research Translation (CHAART)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

William W. Lattimer, Ph.D., M.P.H., Professor and Chair
Department of Clinical and Health Psychology
University of Florida

Jeffrey Harman, Ph.D., Associate Professor and PhD Program Director
Department of Health Services Research, Management and Policy
University of Florida

Ronald Cohen, Ph.D., Professor, Departments of Aging-Geriatric Research, Neurology, & Psychiatry
Director, Center for Cognitive Aging and Memory, University of Florida Institute on Aging

SHARC

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Alcohol consumption is associated with significant behavioral and biological outcomes in persons with HIV infection.  However, few effective strategies exist to help persons with HIV to reduce their drinking. Moreover, few studies involving alcohol and HIV have been sufficiently powered to make conclusions in women.

Florida has the highest rate of newly-diagnosed HIV infections in the US. Its epidemic is characterized by significant racial disparities and high-risk populations including men who have sex with men.

The Southern HIV Alcohol Research Consortium (SHARC) was formed in 2011 by linking three separate NIAAA-funded research proposals involving HIV and high-risk alcohol consumption, including an existing cohort of over 700 persons with HIV in Miami, Florida.

Potential Impact of SHARC

Mark Hart Uncategorized

  • Maximize overall research productivity related to alcohol and HIV infection.
  • Increase capacity to conduct clinical trials.
  • Enhance multidisciplinary and public health collaborations.
  • Support new researchers and trainees.
  • Implement findings into clinical practice and public health settings and improve health outcomes in persons with HIV and high-risk alcohol consumption.
  • Translate research findings into applied clinical and public health settings, while building collaborations with public health clinics serving persons with HIV in Florida.
  • Transform treatment of harmful drinking in settings providingprimary care for HIV infection, with a range of practical intervention strategies targeting behaviors and biologic endpoints.
  • Focus on alcohol’s potential impact on chronic disease outcomes including cognitive functioning, immune senescence, and quality of life.
  • Evaluate health services and health system factors that may influence the delivery of effective interventions for harmful drinking.