Lee H. Harrison, MD, has been awarded funding in the amount of $1,474,298 for a five-year award by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIH/NIDDK) entitled “Pitt-Mozambique Training Program (Pitt-MozHRTP) in COVID-19, Cardiovascular Disease, and Diabetes in People with HIV.” This proposal was submitted in response to the funding opportunity entitled “Fogarty HIV Research Training Program for Low- and Middle-Income Country Institutions” under funding opportunity announcement PAR-19-283.
HIV infection continues to take a severe toll on Mozambique, which underscores the need for investments in building research capacity to help combat the epidemic. To address this need, Dr. Harrison, Dr. Jean Nachega, Associate Professor of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology, and, Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh, and, Dr. Edna Viegas, of the Polana Caniço Health Research Center will establish the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt)-Mozambique HIV Research Training Program (Pitt-MozHRTP). The purpose of this program is to build research capacity at CISPOC, which is a research institution of the Mozambique National Institute of Health.
CISPOC has a growing HIV research portfolio and a commensurate need for increased research capacity. The research focus of this program is COVID-19, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes in people with HIV (CCD-PWH), all areas of enormous clinical and public health importance. Pitt-MozHRTP training sites will be located at the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Stellenbosch (SU) in Cape Town, South Africa. The program will be directed by Dr. Harrison at Pitt; Dr. Viegas, who is responsible for overseeing research at CISPOC; and, Dr. Nachega at SU. A broad array of degree (both PhD and masters) training opportunities will be available in epidemiology and biostatistics, and laboratory sciences. Additionally, post-doctoral fellowships will be offered for exceptional candidates who have recently completed their doctoral training. The program includes a multidisciplinary group of experienced mentors and excellent training opportunities at each site. Trainees will have access to all of the substantial resources of the participating institutions. Over the five-year funding period, training is planned for six masters students, three PhD students, and five post-doctoral fellows. Additionally, ten trainees will attend the Johns Hopkins Graduate Summer Institute of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and nine workshops will be conducted at CISPOC. The Pitt-MozHRTP will make major contributions to building research capacity in the area CCD-PWH in Mozambique by providing a broad array of exceptional training opportunities.