Research-for-Cure Academy

Mitch Matoga

Nationality: Malawian
Institution: University of North Carolina Project Malawi
Country of work: Malawi

What is your motivation for engaging in HIV cure and remission research?

My motivation for engaging in HIV cure and remission research stems from my involvement in HIV treatment research over the years. Just a few years ago, HIV treatment research was about finding more efficacious and safer drugs but this field of research has evolved rapidly to this day when HIV cure and remission seems attainable. I would like to be one of the researchers who will contribute towards the efforts to find HIV cure and remission.

What is your current area of research?

The study I am involved in is a multi-site phase II, open-label, prospective study to measure the effect of early commencement of ART (elvitegravir/cobicistat/emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide) on HIV-1-specific immunity and establishment of HIV-1 reservoir. This study enrolled participants (men and women 18 years and above) with acute HIV-1 infection with Fiebig classification stages I-V, who will be followed for up to 72 weeks. The primary objective of this study is to measure and compare the amount of cell-associated HIV-1 DNA in 5 million CD4+ T cells at week 48 among participants with Fiebig I/II versus Fiebig III/IV versus Fiebig V.h