Addressing the Needs of Special Populations

Supporting the Senior Population

  • UC San Diego’s Stein Institute for Research on Aging (SIRA) is devoted to advancing successful aging and independence for people in their later years through research and public education. SIRA sponsors public lectures that are broadcast on UCSD-TV; provides funding to medical students for age-related research projects; and invites the community to participate in studies and clinical trials.
  • The Macular Degeneration Outreach Project at the UC San Diego Shiley Eye Institute reaches out to over 8,000 people with age-related macular degeneration with programs to restore hope, to enhance independence and to preserve t​he quality of life for residents of San Diego County who suffer from this devastating eye disease.
  • UC San Diego is the coordinating center for the nationwide Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study, a nationwide clinical trials consortium that tests promising new treatments for this still incurable disease.
  • UC San Diego’s Shiley-Marcos Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center is one of the original five Alzheimer’s Disease Centers supported by the National Institute on Aging. Since its inception in 1984, the center has conducted groundbreaking research in the diagnosis, causes, treatment and prevention of this devastating disease and is a valuable source of public information. A longitudinal study of community members with Alzheimer’s and related dementias, as well as normal control subjects, has attracted more than 1,500 volunteers who receive free comprehensive annual exams as well as referrals and support.

Leading the fight against HIV/AIDS

  • UC San Diego’s multi-faceted approach includes community outreach and education on HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention, as well as free, confidential HIV testing and counseling.
  • The UC San Diego AntiViral Research Center has engaged the broad community of men, women and children affected by the disease, and has led a major research effort that has been key in the development and approval of drugs to treat HIV/AIDS.
  • The AntiViral Research Center offers an early detection program that can reveal HIV infection as soon as one week after exposure, rather than the usual two to three months, which greatly increases treatment options and effectiveness.
  • The UC San Diego Mother, Child & Adolescent HIV Program is the only program in San Diego and Imperial Counties dedicated to the care and treatment of HIV-infected pregnant women, children and youth.
  • The Owen Clinic, one of the top HIV care providers in the nation, offers comprehensive outpatient services such as mental health and nutrition counseling; access to clinical trials, including new medications and vaccines; and assistance in obtaining housing, food, transportation and other basic needs.
  • Working to improve binational response to HIV/AIDS and its impact on the region, UCSD has been a leader in cross-border HIV/AIDS research and prevention. In partnership with Mexican universities, the Cross-Border HIV/ AIDS Prevention Training Program gives undergraduate, graduate and medical students in Tijuana and San Diego extensive hands-on experience in research and prevention activities in Baja California.
  • Through Proyecto El Cuete and Proyecto Mujer Mas Segura, UCSD is helping stop the spread of HIV, TB and STDs among injection drug users and sex workers in Tijuana. Our teams are collaborating with Mexican agencies to provide education and prevention, and conducting federally funded research at UCSD on infectious disease transmission.
  • The new Center for HIV/AIDS Minority Pipeline in Substance Abuse (CHAMPS) program offers intensive internships for underrepresented minority post-doctoral fellows and junior faculty who represent the next generation of AIDS research.
  • The UC San Diego Center for AIDS Research offers a number of laboratory services to HIV researchers, such as genomics and sequencing, flow cytometry, and translational virology. The CFAR also offers assistance with clinical trials, biostatistics, bioinformatics, and small grants to assist investigators in collecting pilot data for larger studies.