National Laboratory for HIV Immunology
The National Laboratory for HIV Immunology (NLHI) is the national resource for HIV Immunology. This program contributes to the global effort against the HIV/AIDS epidemic by providing proficiency testing programs for markers of progression to AIDS. It also provides leadership on how to best measure markers of HIV disease progression. Finally, it conducts research on ways to stop HIV transmission and progression to AIDS.
These activities are achieved in several ways:
- Reference services - a national proficiency program (CIQAP) to monitor immune markers of HIV disease and progression to AIDS
- International leadership - assisting resource poor regions hardest hit by the HIV pandemic by helping them better measure CD4 T cell numbers as well as viral load through an International proficiency program QASI [QASI-LI (Leucocyte Immunophenotyping) and QASI-VL (Viral Load)]. In addition, providing assurance to resource-challenged regions that testing for HIV in infants is reliable and accurate [QASI-EID (Early Infant Diagnosis)]
- Leadership and support to the HIV community by evaluating new technologies for monitoring HIV/AIDS disease progression
- Basic research to expand the knowledge base of HIV/AIDS in the international scientific community by defining immune control of HIV disease progression; by working towards HIV vaccine and therapeutic development through better understanding of mucosal immunity or resistance to HIV transmission; by conducting studies to both monitor and improve long term health outcomes and comorbidities in HIV infected subjects;
- Basic research in understanding factors involved in HIV/STBBI and other relevant co-infections that impact HIV disease progression.
- Efforts to expand operations from international programs (QASI) to remote and Northern regions of Canada in a culturally relevant manner through the development and implementation of the HIV Toolkit