Funding to Support Research on Opioid Epidemic, Ending HIV/AIDS Among People Who Use Drugs, and More

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The National Institute for Drug Abuse, part of the National Institutes of Health, has awarded NYU Meyers’ Center for Drug Use and HIV/HCV Research (CDUHR) a five-year, nearly $7.5 million grant to continue the center’s research.

Since its creation 20 years ago, CDUHR has been continuously funded by the National Institute for Drug Abuse. CDUHR was founded in 1998 as the first center for the socio-behavioral study of substance use and HIV in the United States and became part of the NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing in 2009.

“A critical time has been reached in the course of the HIV epidemic. Many states have announced plans for ‘Ending HIV/AIDS.’ However, reaching this goal for people who use drugs is challenging, and recent HIV outbreaks in people who use drugs have shown that barriers to HIV prevention and treatment services persist.  In this next phase of CDUHR we will support investigators in devising innovative strategies to ending HIV/AIDS among people who use drugs, including addressing the unique problem of the opioid crisis,” said Sherry Deren, PhD, and Holly Hagan, PhD, co-directors of CDUHR.

The renewed funding will support the center for the next five years (years 21-25), during which time the researchers will focus on a theme of “Ending HIV/AIDS Among People Who Use Drugs: Overcoming Challenges.” While recent advances have reduced the incidence of HIV and allowed HIV-positive people to reach near-normal lifespans, ending HIV/AIDS among people who use drugs requires addressing a number of emerging and persistent barriers.

A critical barrier to ending HIV/AIDS is the dramatic increase in prescription opioid misuse, which has given rise to a new generation of heroin users and injectors. Several ongoing studies at CDUHR are focusing on gaining a deeper understanding of opioid misuse, preventing drug users from transitioning to injecting drugs, and comparing treatments for opioid addiction.

Another barrier is the lack of attention to the role of substance use in new HIV infections in men who have sex with men and heterosexuals. In addition, HIV-positive people who use drugs experience disparities all along the continuum of HIV care, including delayed diagnosis, lower retention in care, delayed initiation of antiretroviral therapy, and poorer disease outcomes.

CDUHR aims to support research on effective ways to broadly implement evidence-based HIV prevention and care interventions for people who use drugs. The funding will also support collaborations with researchers in areas where HIV epidemics are occurring among people who use drugs, including rural America and in eastern Europe and Asia.

CDUHR is an interdisciplinary research center that includes researchers from four affiliated institutions: NYU, Mount Sinai Health System, NDRI, and John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

The mission of the Center for Drug Use and HIV/HCV Research (CDUHR) is to end the HIV and HCV epidemics in drug using populations and their communities by conducting transdisciplinary research and disseminating its findings to inform programmatic, policy, and grass roots initiatives at the local, state, national, and global levels. CDUHR is a Core Center of Excellence funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (Grant #P30 DA011041).  It is the first center for the socio-behavioral study of substance use and HIV in the United States and is located at the New York University Rory Meyers College of Nursing. For more information, visit

About NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing (@NYUNursing)
NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing is a global leader in nursing and health. Founded in 1932, the College offers BS, MS, DNP, and PhD degree programs providing the educational foundation to prepare the next generation of nursing leaders and researchers. NYU Meyers has three programs ranked in the top 10 by U.S. News & World Report and is among the top 10 nursing schools receiving NIH funding, thanks to its research mission and commitment to innovative approaches to healthcare worldwide.

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