The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in La Jolla, California, has announced two grants totaling more than $4.5 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help develop a vaccine against HIV/AIDS.
Awarded through the foundation's Collaboration for AIDS Vaccine Discovery program, the grants will fund the development of tools in TSRI's High Resolution Electron Microscopy Facility that can be used in collecting and processing high-resolution images of HIV proteins interacting with antibodies, giving scientists a picture of which immunogens are most effective and why. The funds also will enable TSRI to provide the processing power necessary to handle the unprecedented amount of data that will be generated by work. Last year, the Gates Foundation awarded a grant that enabled TSRI to acquire a powerful new Titan Krios cryo-electron microscope.
"We are delighted by the Gates Foundation's support of this critical work," said acting TSRI president and CEO Jim Paulson. "With thirty-five million infected individuals worldwide, an effective HIV vaccine is urgently needed to slow and ultimately eliminate new infections."