Tully Awarded amfAR Fellowship

Tully Awarded amfAR Fellowship

Dec 04

Ragon Institute Research Fellow Dr. Damien Tully has been awarded the amfAR Mathilde Krim Fellowships in Basic Biomedical Research.

 

The Krim Fellowship program is an annual research initiative which supports young scientists seeking innovative solutions to HIV/AIDS.  This years six recipients, will each be awarded $150,000 over two years to support their research.

 

Dr. Tully will continue to work with Dr. Todd Allen‘s laboratory at Ragon where he will use his amfAR funding to study tissue from mouse models and recently infected people to better understand how the virus spreads once infection occurs, vital information needed for the development of a vaccine.

 

“Receiving this funding amid the current era of scientific budget cuts is encouraging as it gives a future generation of researchers the potential to perform exciting and innovative work on understanding the virus, said Dr. Tully. “As a young scientist, this award provides an important stepping-stone for developing my future career enabling me to generate strong data that will be the basis for future publications and grants with the goal of building an independent research group.”

 

From the amfAR release:

 

Damien Tully, Ph.D.; Mentor: Todd Allen, Ph.D.
Massachusetts General Hospital, Cambridge, MA
$150,000 (# 108683)
Getting to the guts of mucosal HIV-1 transmission through virus evolution: The great majority of new HIV infections occur by transmission through mucosal membranes, such as at the vagina or rectum, and a vaccine must be able to prevent transmission through such membranes. Regardless of the route of transmission, the majority of virus, and the damage it inflicts on cells, occurs in the lymphoid tissue in the intestines. In order to understand  the initial events that lead to massive replication and destruction in the intestines, Dr. Tully proposes to use biopsy tissue from people who were very recently infected, as well as a mouse model, to understand how the virus spreads and the influence of the immune system’s attempts to quell the infection on the development of mutations. These studies will yield information important for the development of a vaccine and possibly a cure.

 

amfAR press release