WRAIR and NMRC conduct recombinant DNA research as part of their efforts to make life-saving vaccines. Because of this type of work, the National Institutes of Health requires WRAIR/NMRC to determine whether processes and products from these investigations are safe for both the researchers working directly with the DNA as well as safe for those individuals who are in surrounding communities. Oversight of these operations is undertaken by the WRAIR/NMRC Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC). This committee meets quarterly in the months of March, June, September and December. This is an open meeting and the public is invited to attend. The next IBC meeting will be on December 12, 2019 from 3:30 to 4:30 PM. If you would like to attend call 301-319-3516 (iPhone: 301-263-4691) to arrange clearance to enter the military post and meeting site.
The Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) hosted a World AIDS Day event Tuesday, Nov. 26, highlighting advances in DoD-led HIV research and celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Army-led RV144 HIV vaccine study. WRAIR’s Military HIV Research Program headed the RV144 “Thai study,” the first-ever – and only to-date – clinical trial to demonstrate an HIV vaccine regimen was safe and modestly effective in preventing HIV infection. The RV144 trial represented a massive undertaking for the Army and serves as a model of international and interagency collaboration.
Each summer, over 500 middle and high school students from the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area participate in the hands-on science programs Gains in the Education of Mathematics and Science at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. GEMS aims to galvanize students’ interest in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields; promote diversity in STEM careers and curb the summer slide, defined by Scholastic as the loss of significant knowledge in reading and math over summer break and a subsequent skill loss each year. The GEMS program is one of a range of science education and professional development programs offered at WRAIR, including undergraduate and post-graduate (bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral) research fellowships, to help develop the next generation of American scientists.
The Military Health System’s Bug Week campaign seeks to answer these questions and educate military personnel and their families around the world about the bugs they encounter. In an exhibit titled “Mosquito Wranglers: A Bug’s Eye View of Medical Research,” three representatives from WRAIR participated in the event, showcasing live examples of the mosquitoes, specimens from an extensive catalogue of disease vectors as well as products developed, tested or utilized at WRAIR for mosquito trapping or prevention. Bug Week continues through August 2 on www.health.mil/bugs and the @MilitaryHealth and @TRICARE accounts on Facebook and Twitter, as well as WRAIR’s own accounts.
On April 26, the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research hosted the fourth annual Magill Malaria Forum, entitled “Overcoming Challenges at the Front Lines of Malaria.” The event included remarks by clinicians, researchers and product users followed by a panel discussion to review the current state of malaria research with a special focus on military medical research around the world.