Fraunhofer Society, Institute for Biomedical Engineering (FhG-IBMT), Germany

Logo Fraunhofer IBMTThe Fraunhofer Society (FhG) is the leading organization for applied R&D in Europe which currently maintains 80 research institutions (57 institutes) throughout Germany with 15,000 employees. The Headquarters administers an annual research budget of about 1.4 billion EUR. The Fraunhofer Institute for Biomedical Engineering (FhG-IBMT) has its competence in the areas of medical engineering, cryobiotechnology and biohybrid technology. The FhG-IBMT center for cryobiotechnology is a unique facility consisting of an industrial scale state-of-the-art research cryobank for biological samples. Hagen von Briesen was Principal Investigator of the Centralized Facility for the Isolation and Characterization of HIV within the WHO-Network, Global Program on AIDS, later organized by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). He is managing now the Molecular Cell & Tissue Engineering group at FhG-IBMT and has been the Principal Investigator of the first GHRC project phase.

The Fraunhofer Society and its IBMT have long-term experience in managing international multi-partner R&D projects and networks. The current GHRC project has been successfully coordinated by IBMT.

Within the first project year, the installation of a P3-laboratory could be completed and the laboratory has been approved by local authorities according to German law to handle infectious agents of category 3.

The new laboratory consists of 47 m² full P3 laboratory, where infectious agents and GMO up to category 3 can be handled, and 170 m² P3** category floorspace. The latter includes 95 m² cryostorage room. Likewise, a machine to automate the pseudoviruses production has been developed and installed at HSC in the first project phase.

Thus, the basis for the operation of the HIV cryobank and for medium scale generation of bioreagents has been set.


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World Health Organization (WHO), Switzerland

Logo WHOThe Initiative for Vaccine Research and the WHO have a longtime technical, financial and administrative experience in the organization of major international meetings and conferences. WHO serves on behalf of all Member States and is uniquely placed to serve as an impartial/neutral convener of different fora representing broad communities of private and public sectors, developed and developing countries. HIV vaccine activities in WHO were initiated in 1989, as part of the Biomedical Research Unit of the former WHO Global Program on AIDS (GPA). With the establishment of UNAIDS in 1996, HIV vaccine activities were moved to the UNAIDS Vaccine Team. A joint WHO-UNAIDS HIV Vaccine Initiative (HVI) was further established and hosted at the Initiative for Vaccine Research since 2001. Its mission is to promote the development, facilitate evaluation, and address future availability of preventive HIV vaccines, with a focus on needs of developing countries.

Saladin Kamilovitch Osmanov

World Health Organization WHO
UNAIDS HIV Vaccine Initiative
20, Avenue Appia
1211 Geneva, Switzerland

Phone: +41 227914393 / +41 2274 02611
Fax: +41 227914865



University of the Saarland (UdS), Germany

Logo University of the SaarlandThe laboratory of Andreas Meyerhans is located at the Department of Virology at UdS. It is well-suited for HIV-work and includes a BSL-3 laboratory with equipment for virological, immunological und molecular research. Major focus of the research activities are the analysis of HIV evolution and the quantification of antigen-specific T-cell responses. A collaboration with a resource-limited laboratory in Tanzania was recently established with the aim to analyze the consequences of microbial co-infections for HIV pathogenesis.

Heiko Zimmermann is full professor (chair of „Molecular & Cellular Biotechnology / Nanotechnology) at the University of the Saarland. He is involved in Technical Development & Engineering.

Prof. Dr. Heiko Zimmermann

Fraunhofer-Institut für Biomedizinische Technik IBMT
Ensheimer Straße 48
66386 St. Ingbert, Germany

Phone +49 6894 980-246 
Fax +49 6894 980-444



San Raffaele Scientific Institute (DIBIT), Italy

Logo DIBITToday, the Fondazione San Raffaele is the leading Italian institution in biomedical research. The DIBIT has been involved in AIDS research for several years. The Institute has a large infectious diseases division, which co-ordinates national and international networks investigating the role of immunotherapy in acute and chronic HIV-infection. The Institute is equipped with modern facilities and advanced technologies. Dr. Scarlatti has a fully equipped BL-3 laboratory and a molecular biology laboratory available to her group. In addition, she has access to BL-2 laboratories, an isotope laboratory, common facilities for DNA sequencing, protein and peptide synthesis, protein structure analysis, and large animal quarters.


Gabriella Scarlatti

Head of Viral Evolution and Transmission Unit
DIBIT - San Raffaele Scientific Institute
Via Olgettina 58
20132 Milan, Italy

Phone: +39 02 2643 4906 (dir) or 2821 (Assistant)
Fax: +39 02 2643 4905



Lund University (ULund), Sweden

Logo Lund UniversityUnit of Virology, Division of Medical Microbiology, Department of Laboratory Medicine at the medical Faculty of Lund University: It has one professor of Virology and two Assistant Professors with expertise in immunology/virology and epidemiology. The Unit of Virology has 407m2 laboratory space devoted to research on human and simian immunodeficiency viruses. The Unit has a biological safety level 3 laboratory (BSL-3) and a cell culture facility for work with uninfected cells. The laboratory has a flow cytometer and an instrument for real-time PCR. A part time secretary and economist are available at the departmental level. In addition, the university grant office provides administrative and legal help to holders of international grants.


Eva Maria Fenyö

Lund University
Dept Laboratory Medicine
Div Medical Microbiology
Solvegatan 23
223 62 Lund, Sweden

Phone: +46 46 173275
Fax: +46 46 176033



National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC), United Kingdom

Logo NIBSCThe NIBSC has the primary goal of safeguarding and enhancing public health by assuring the quality and safety of biological substances used in medicine. Its strategy is to understand and characterize such biologicals and to develop standards and reference materials so that safety and efficacy of biological medicines can be effectively assessed. NIBSC operates as an Official Medicines Control Laboratory (OMCL) for the European Union and is a designated WHO International Laboratory for Biological Standards.



Dr Meghna Ramaswamy

Division of Retrovirology, Centre for AIDS Reagents
National Institute of Biological Standards and Control
Blanche Lane, South Mimms, Potters Bar, Herts, UK, EN6 3QG

Phone: +44 1707 641000
Fax: +44 1707 641060




NIH AIDS Research and Reference Reagent Program (NIH-ARP), USA

Logo NIHThe NIH-ARP, established in 1998 by the Division of AIDS (DAIDS), National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), is a unique and versatile worldwide resource of critical reagents, many of them not readily available to the HIV/AIDS research community otherwise. The ARP acquires state-of-the-art reagents; produces these reagents, standardized panels, and protocols; and then provides them to qualified investigators throughout the world. The ARP participates as an AIDS Collaborating Center of the joint WHO/United Nations Program in HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), and the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC) Centralized Facility for AIDS Reagents.


Opendra Sharma,
Diana Finzi

Pathogenesis and Basic Research Branch
Division of AIDS, NIAID, NIH, DHHS
6700-B Rockledge Drive, Room 4151
Bethesda, MD 20892-7626, USA (overnight, use 20817)

Phone: (301) 496-9041
Fax: (301) 402-3211


University of Washington (UW), USA

Logo University of WashingtonThe University of Washington is one of the nation's leading research universities. A strong HIV research community has built up in and around the University of Washington, with multiple connections to collaborating institutions in this immediate area, as well as nationally and internationally. The Mullins laboratory has worked in retroviral research, focused on viral genetic analysis, for 25 years and has been actively involved in taking training workshops to clinical and research HIV labs in developing countries. There is a strong desire to see that the tools, technology and understanding gained in this lab be made part of immediate, practical help to those hardest hit by the AIDS epidemic.


James I. Mullins

Mailing Address:
Dept. of Microbiology
Box 358070
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-8070, USA    

Shipping Address:
Dept. of Microbiology
University of Washington
960 Repulican Street
Seattle, WA 98109-4325, USA



Stellenbosch University (SU), South Africa

Logo Stellenbosch UniversityThe Division of Medical Virology provides a diagnostic service as part of the South African National Health Laboratory Service (NHLS). It is SANAS-accredited and offers a large repertoire of virological laboratory tests including virus isolation, serology and state-of-the-art nucleic acid detection to Tygerberg Hospital and its referral area in the Western Cape province. It does more than 100,000 virological tests annually, including c. 20,000 HIV viral load tests for patients on the antiretroviral roll-out programme, over 7,000 proviral PCRs on HIV-exposed infants, and the approximately 10,000 samples from the Western Cape province's annual HIV and syphilis antenatal survey. It is the only NHLS laboratory offering genotypic HIV antiretroviral drug resistance testing. Academically, the Division of Medical Virology is part of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Stellenbosch. Its postgraduate teaching programme comprises virology and other pathology specialists in training as well as BSc Honours, MSc and PhD students. It is key partner in Africa's first International Research Training Group "HIV/AIDS and Associated Infectious Diseases in Southern Africa", together with the Universities of Würzburg, Germany, and Cape Town, allowing PhD candidates to work in an attractive international environment at an early stage in their career.. Research projects include the genomic diversity and molecular epidemiology of the HIV-1 epidemic in South Africa and beyond; immunological aspects of HIV infection, including those relevant to vaccine development, through collaborations within two large international research consortia; and antiretroviral drug resistance as an emerging area of major concern in the context of universal access to antiretroviral therapy. An ongoing project seeks to determine factors affecting the evolution of drug resistance mutations in patients attending the Tygerberg HIV family clinic. It studies a cohort of patients failing antiretroviral therapy, gathering clinical data and conducting pilot study to test the impact of resistance testing on outcomes both clinically and with regard to drug resistance. An in house HIV-1 genotyping assay has been fully validated and adopted, and work is ongoing on the development of highly sensitive allelic discrimination assays. The Division is a partner in the Southern African HIV Treatment & Resistance Network (SATuRN).


Wolfgang Preiser

Professor and Head: Division of Medical Virology
Department of Pathology, Faculty of Health Sciences
Stellenbosch University and NHLS Tygerberg
PO Box 19063, Tygerberg 7505, SOUTH AFRICA

Phone: +27 21 938 9353 or 9354
Fax: +27 21 938 9361

Contact: Mrs Sal van Zyl



Instituto de Biologica Experimental e Technologia (IBET), Portugal

Logo iBETIBET is a private non-profit institute acting as an interface between available own research and partnered fundamental research to application with companies. IBET operates one quarter of the 18 000 m² building of the Instituto de Tecnológia Química e Biológica (ITQB), including 14 laboratories and 2 BL2 laboratories plus a 2 000 m² Pilot Plant for fermentation, extraction and purification processes. Equipment with two suites of 400m2 of clean rooms operating under Good Manufacturing Practices, for GLP analytical microbiological / molecular biology field trial certification started in 1991. IBET's Pilot Plant has been used for processing of bacteria, yeast, and fungi as well as for virus production and animal cell technology for pharmaceutical, veterinary, agroindustrial and cosmetic industries. IBET has a staff of 60 dynamic and highly motivated Ph.D. scientists and engineers, having access to a pool of 500 research scientists and highly qualified technicians in Universities and neighbouring research centres which are partners. The Animal Cell Technology Team under Prof. Manuel Carrondo and Dr. Paula Alves has over fifteen years experience in research, development and production of all types of mammalian cell culturing, retroviruses and retrovirus like particles, adeno-, adeno-associated and baculoviruses for gene therapy and vaccines. Since 1994, IBET is GLP certified for EMA/FDA and collaborates with companies like Merck & Co., GSK, Astra Zeneca, Bayer Schering Pharma, Merck Serono Pharma as well as smaller ones (Crucell, Cevec, Cellartis).


Manuel José Teixeira Carrondo

Apartado 12
2781-901 Oeiras 

Phone: +351.21.446.93.60
Fax: +351.21.442.11.61




The D.I. Ivanovsky Institute of Virology of The Ministry of Health and Social Development of The Russian Federation

Logo Ivanovsky InstituteThe D.I. Ivanovsky Institute of Virology Russian Academy of Medical Sciences is one of the first-rate research organizations in the world in the sphere of ecology, epidemiology, molecular biology, and molecular virology. A number of WHO centers, All-Russian Center of the ecology of viruses, State collection of viruses, Council of experts of the virology Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, Ethical committee, Dissertation Council for the defence of a Candidate's and Doctor's dissertations, Clinical studies of graduates from medical schools, Postgraduate course, Virology department of I.M. Sechenov Moscow Medical Academy, several diagnostic centers, clinical unit of the First Moscow Hospital for Infectious Diseases, Department of experimental manufacture for release and quality assurance of the test-systems and antiviral vaccines function on the basis of Ivanovsky Institute.

Professor Eduard Karamov, Ph.D.(molecular biology), Dr.Sc. (virology), is the head of Immunochemistry laboratory of Ivanovsky Institute of virology and the head of the laboratory of molecular biology in Institute of Immunology in Moscow. He is involved in retrovirology research since 1985. The first Russian HIV strain was isolated in his laboratory. He supervised the development of first diagnostic tests for HIV, which were widely used in USSR and Russia, and antivirals used for AIDS treatment. Professor Edward Karamov published more 100 articles in scientific journals and made over 100 presentations at international conferences and symposia. He was a supervisor in twelve Ph.D. and two Dr.Sci. fellowships. Professor Eduard Karamov is an invited lecturer at the School of Biology of Lomonosov State University of Moscow (Chair of Virology, Retrovirology Course). His lab served as a probation site for many scientists of the former USSR and Eastern Europe. He is a Member of Advisory Board of the Russian AIDS Vaccine program and a Member of the Coordinating Committee of GHAVE.  He is a member of Editorial Board of international and Russian scientific journals (AIDS, Immunology, Russian Journal of Immunology etc).


Professor Eduard Karamov, PhD, DSci
Laboratory of Immunochemistry, Head
Ivanovsky Insitute of Virology
Laboratory of Molecular Biology of HIV, Head
National Center of Immunology
Phone: +7 499 190-3048
Fax: +7 499 190-2867
Box 15, Moscow
127562 Russia




National HIV Repository and Bioinformatic Center (NHRBC), Thailand

Logo Mahidol UniversityThe National HIV repository and Bioinformatic Center (Thailand) (NHRBC),   Collaborating Center between Division of AIDS, Department of Communicable Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health and Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Thailand, has been established since 2000 by Technical subcommitte on HIV/AIDS vaccine trial and development, National AIDS Committee under second Thailand National Plan for AIDS Vaccine Development (1997).” The NHRBC is located at 7th Floor of  Microbiology Building, Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, Bangkok, Thailand.  NHRBC has been the leading authority on HIV genetic diversity in Thailand.  There are about 200 new HIV-1 isolates from countrywide collected and characterized each year. The Repository of NHRBC consists of representative and well-characterized HIV isolates and HIV vaccine-related reagents. Information can be accessed through the website This collected HIV-1 isolates are being used as prototype in HIV-1 vaccine development, immunological tests in HIV-1 vaccine clinical trial in Thailand, cloning to produce recombinant protein.


Prof.Dr. Ruengpung Sutthent
Head, Department of Microbiology,
Director, National HIV Repository and Bioinformatic Center (Thailand)
2 Prannok Road, Siriraj Hospital, Microbiology Building,
Bangkok 10700 Thailand.
Tel: +6602-4197463, -4113920, Fax: +6602-4113921




Department of Experimental & Health Sciences of the University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona

Logo PompeuThe Department of Experimental & Health Sciences of the University Pompeu Fabra was founded in 1998 with the aim to be innovative in education and excellent in research. It is internationally recognized in Molecular Biology and Biomedicine. The Department is integrated in the Biomedical Research Park of Barcelona, a concentration of human & technical resources and one of the important research nodes of Spain.

Prof. Dr. Andreas Meyerhans is an ICREA Research Professor and head of the laboratory of Infection Biology in the Department of Experimental & Health Sciences of the University Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona ( He has an extensive experience in microbial infections, from the level of the infected cell to the level of the infected host. His research interests cover aspects of virus evolution and microbial T cell responses. He is partner in several international collaborations and the scientific coordinator of EUCO-Net, an international consortium on HIV/TB co-infections.


Prof. Dr. Andreas Meyerhans
Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Department of Experimental and Health Sciences
Doctor Aiguader, 88
Edificio PRBB - 3er piso
8003 Barcelona, Spain

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WHO-UNAIDS Guidelines

At the annual meeting of the GHRC consortium in December 2011 it was proposed that the new edition of the Guidelines should be a collaborative effort between WHO and the GHRC consortium. To ensure that the Guidelines include all aspects of HIV vaccine research, an advisory group of experts representing different fields met in a 3-day meeting at the premises of the FhG-IBMT in Sulzbach on 18-20 June 2012.