Drug use study involving Estonian researchers receives €2.2 million HIV/AIDS grant

(Pärnu Postimees/Scanpix)
2/12/2015 1:29 PM
Category: Sci-Tech

One of the five 2015 Avant-Garde Awards for HIV/AIDS Research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), which is part of the US National Institute of Health, has been given to a study co-authored by the researchers of the University of Tartu.

The "Combined Prevention to Reduce Initiation into Injecting Drug Use" project, led by Don Des Jarlais from New York City, is a multi-component HIV prevention intervention study in two sites with growing concerns about heroin use - New York City and Tallinn, Estonia. Researchers will focus on combining a number of interventions with demonstrated effectiveness in reducing the number of drug users who transition to injection drugs.

The project will involve a team of researchers from the University of Tartu Department of Public Health, under the leadership of Professor of Epidemiology Anneli Uusküla.

Each of the five projects selected by NIDA will receive 500,000 dollars (440,000 euros) per year for five years. NIDA's annual Avant-Garde Award competition, now in its eighth year, is intended to stimulate high-impact research that may lead to groundbreaking opportunities for the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS in drug users. The term “avant-garde” is used to describe highly innovative approaches that have the potential to be transformative.

"These scientists have proposed creative approaches that could transform the way we think about HIV/AIDS research, and could lead to the development of exciting new tools and strategies to prevent infections and improve the lives of substance abusers infected with HIV,“ said NIDA Director Nora D. Volkow.

M. Oll

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