UNC, Emory receive $18M in NIH funds for technology-related studies focusing on HIV care

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill researchers, along with colleagues at Emory University in Atlanta, have secured $18 million in National Institutes of Health funding. The institutions will use the grant over the next five years to form the UNC/Emory Center for Innovative Technology or iTech.

iTech will facilitate six research studies and includes seven sites around the country. The studies will aim to develop health interventions targeting 15 to 24 year olds at risk for or currently living with HIV. The studies will use technology to improve the HIV care continuum.

"For youth at risk of becoming infected with HIV, we will develop apps that aim to increase HIV testing, and use of and adherence to pre-exposure prophylaxis to prevent HIV. For youth who test positive for the virus, we will develop electronic health interventions to engage them in care and improve adherence to antiretroviral therapy," said Lisa Hightow-Weidman, MD, associate professor of medicine and principal investigator of the Behavior and Technology Lab at UNC, in a statement.

NIH's Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development funded the award.

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