The Institute of Human Virology (IHV) is the first center in the United States - perhaps the world - to combine the disciplines of basic science, epidemiology and clinical research in a concerted effort to speed the discovery of diagnostics and therapeutics for a wide variety of chronic and deadly viral and immune disorders - most notably HIV, the cause of AIDS.
Formed in 1996 as a partnership between the State of Maryland, the City of Baltimore, the University System of Maryland and the University of Maryland Medical System, IHV is an institute of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and is home to some of the most globally-recognized and world-renowned experts in the field of human virology. IHV was co-founded by Robert Gallo, MD, director of the of the IHV, William Blattner, MD, retired since 2016 and formerly associate director of the IHV and director of IHV’s Division of Epidemiology and Prevention and Robert Redfield, MD, resigned in March 2018 to become director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and formerly associate director of the IHV and director of IHV’s Division of Clinical Care and Research.
In addition to the two Divisions mentioned, IHV is also comprised of a Basic Science Division, Vaccine Research Division, Immunotherapy Division, a Center for International Health, Education & Biosecurity, and four Scientific Core Facilities.
The Institute, with its various laboratory and patient care facilities, is uniquely housed in a 250,000-square-foot building located in the center of Baltimore and our nation’s HIV/AIDS pandemic. IHV creates an environment where multidisciplinary research, education, and clinical programs work closely together to expedite the scientific understanding of HIV/AIDS pathogenesis and to develop therapeutic interventions to make AIDS and virally-caused cancers manageable, if not curable, diseases.
A particular focus of IHV includes learning how to utilize the body's natural chemistry for its own therapeutic potential and pursuing biologically-based treatment approaches that are less toxic to the body and, often, less costly to the patient and public. IHV also pursues the development of effective therapeutic and preventative vaccines, science's greatest hope in putting an end to the AIDS pandemic.
IHV's more than 300 employees include more than 80 faculty whose research efforts are focused in the area of chronic human viral infection and disease. At present, more than 75 percent of the Institute's clinical and research effort is targeted at HIV infection, but also includes hepatitis C virus, human T cell leukemia viruses 1 and 2, human papillomavirus, herpes viruses and cancer research. IHV’s patient base has grown from just 200 patients to approximately 5,000 in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., and more than 2 million in African and Caribbean nations. In particular, IHV is internationally renowned for its basic science and vaccine research, which includes a preventive HIV vaccine candidate in human clinical trials and funded largely by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
IHV Public Relations
Nora Samaranayake, Director