Western University of Health Sciences College of Pharmacy Associate Professor David Jesse Sanchez, PhD, was awarded an R21 grant in the amount of $347,212 from the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the project, “Disruption of Type I Interferon Induction by a KSHV Homologue of IPS-1.”
This project was awarded under an NIH notice of special interest on “High” Priority AIDS Research on AIDS-defining Cancers due to its proposed work on Kaposi’s Sarcoma. This grant focuses on the discovery by Dr. Sanchez’s laboratory that KSHV, the virus that causes Kaposi’s Sarcoma, often in AIDS patients, has stolen and modified a gene from the human genome so the virus can block the activation of antiviral immunity.
The aim of this study is to provide new avenues of therapy allowing the immune system to recover immune activity against this virus. With this grant, Dr. Sanchez’s laboratory in the College of Pharmacy has been awarded nearly $1 million in NIH funding to study the immune response to HIV and AIDS-associated malignancies.