The Fogarty HIV-associated TB Training Program (HATTP) will develop the next generation of research leaders in this high burden disease area and strategically fill gaps at UCT.
South Africa has an exceptionally high burden of HIV, tuberculosis (TB), and HIV-TB co-infection. An estimated 7 million people in South Africa are living with HIV, while the country also has one of the highest TB incidence rates in the world, approaching 1,000/100,000 people per annum, driven largely by the HIV epidemic. Over 50% of treated TB patients are HIV co-infected. Integrating HIV and TB treatments reduces mortality, but co-treatment presents major challenges including drug-drug interactions, drug toxicities, and TB immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (TB-IRIS).
While UCT research has made important contributions to the prevention, diagnosis and management of HIV-TB, this is a dynamic field with evolving challenges and questions. HATTP builds on existing UCT strengths to address the next generation of research questions related to HIV-TB treatment, as well as basic science, diagnostic and epidemiological aspects of HIV-TB interactions. HATTP:
provides strategic training opportunities at each step on the trajectory toward research independence, including attracting medical students to HIV-TB research, supporting entry into research, fellowship training towards PhDs, and post-PhD support;
increases the number of clinician researchers/scientists undertaking research in HIV-TB clinical epidemiology and translational science;
develops specific capacity in analytical techniques for pharmacogenomics applicable to HIV-TB treatment, molecular and immune pathogenesis of drug hypersensitivity reactions in HIV-TB, and mathematical modelling of the HIV-TB epidemic and interventions;
strengthens UCT’s institutional capacity to address knowledge gaps in this field and tackle new scientific questions as the epidemiology and treatment of HIV and TB evolve; and
creates training opportunities to accelerate the demographic transformation of HIV-TB researchers at UCT, by creating opportunities for black South Africans, to redress persistent disparities created by apartheid.
HATTP provides short-, medium-, and long-term training opportunities in the form of short courses, courses of less than one year's duration, and PhD and post-doctoral fellowships.