The Data Coordinating Center (DCC) supports the National NeuroAIDS Tissue Consortium (NNTC). The NNTC is a resource for investigators conducting neuroAIDS research to identify the neuropathogenic mechanisms involved in HIV disease of the central and peripheral nervous systems.
The consortium is composed of four NNTC Clinical Sites and two DCC sites, at UNMC and the Emmes Corporation, Rockville, MD. The sites work cooperatively as a resource for the research community, providing HIV/AIDS investigators with clinically annotated datasets of antemortem information and associated experimental research datasets derived from postmortem tissue and fluids. The DCC provides the NNTC with scientific leadership, management expertise, bioinformatics and information systems infrastructure, statistical and epidemiology expertise, and serves as a voting member of the NNTC Steering Committee.
The DCC works cooperatively with the NNTC Clinical Sites to provide:
- Management and database capabilities to ensure effective clinical and brain banking operations and
- Scientific expertise in biostatistics and HIV epidemiology to support broad analyses of the NNTC and CNS HIV Antiretroviral Therapy Effects Research Study (CHARTER) clinical databases and analyses that support the recruitment and retention goals for the cohort.
The NNTC has produced over 535 peer-reviewed publications, over 215 abstracts/book chapters/presentations, as well as supporting the work on numerous researchers' grants. The DCC serves as the point of contact for users of the resource (tissue and/or data requests) and services the requests from submission through fulfillment of the request and follow up with the requestors to curate and annotate experimental data derived from NNTC specimens used in their research. These results are publicly available on the NeuroAIDS-DCC website for request shaping and post-hoc analyses.
The NNTC website is used extensively for dissemination of information related to the NNTC clinical cohort (query tools, reports, request applications) and management tasks such as resource tracking, document libraries, and communication activities. The NeuroAIDS-DCC website hosts experimental data generated from NNTC specimens and is the point of access for the CHARTER clinical research database. An inventory of all NNTC and CHARTER specimens housed at each NNTC Clinical Site is maintained on the NNTC and NeuroAIDS-DCC research data websites, as are databases of additional research data beyond clinical assessments (e.g. bioinformatics datasets generated by the users of the resource).
The NeuroAIDS-DCC website also houses information related to the Global CSF Escape and Reservoir Consortium for HIV-1. The NeuroAIDS-DCC website also hosts the Global CSF Escape and Reservoir Consortium for HIV-1, a new initiative designed to spur increased research and understanding of CSF escape and its implications in HIV reservoir establishment, viral suppression, and impact on the cure strategies. The DCC promotes the NNTC through public relations materials including a comprehensive website and meeting presentations.
The NNTC has served as a valuable resource to the neuroAIDS research community since 1998 (Cohort Reports as of February 2, 2017).