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Co-investigators to Study Anal Dysplasia Among HIV-Infected Individuals

November 2, 2017

Close-up of a microscope and slides

A $25,000 grant for an HIV Cancer Pilot award from the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center will support a collaborative investigation into the severity of anal dysplasia, which can lead to anal cancer, and its association with inflammation in HIV infection. Co-investigators from Drexel University College of Medicine and Thomas Jefferson University will evaluate the relationship between the degree of anal dysplasia and HIV-associated chronic inflammation.

The collaborators include Zsofi Szep, MD, and Florence Momplaisir, MD, Division of Infectious Diseases & HIV Medicine; Lucas Poggio, MD, Department of Surgery; Vanessa Pirrone, PhD, Brian Wighdal, PhD, and Will Dampier, PhD, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Drexel University College of Medicine; and Amy Leader, DrPH, MPH, Division of Population Science, Department of Medical Oncology, Thomas Jefferson University.

According to Dr. Szep, “There is a much higher prevalence of anal cancer among HIV-infected individuals in comparison to individuals who do not have HIV infection. There is also a high prevalence of anal dysplasia among HIV-positive individuals, which can result in anal cancer. The heightened inflammation in HIV infection may contribute to the higher prevalence of anal dysplasia.”