Yale University

About CIRA

The Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDS (CIRA) was established in 1997 and is currently New England's only National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) funded AIDS research center. CIRA brings together scientists from 25 different disciplines and three institutions including Yale University, The Institute for Community Research and the Institute for Collaboration on Health, Intervention, and Policy (InCHIP) at the University of Connecticut. At Yale, faculty from five different schools participate in CIRA, including the Yale School of Public Health, Yale School of Medicine, Yale Law School, Yale Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, and Yale School of Nursing.

Mission Statement

CIRA supports innovative, interdisciplinary research that focuses on the implementation of HIV prevention and treatment and the elimination of HIV disparities.  

Specific Aims

CIRA received its renewal from NIMH in 2018 to provide support to multidisciplinary HIV-related research with the following specific aims:

  1. Become a national resource for Implementation Science research on the HIV epidemic and mental health. As the sole AIDS Prevention Research Center in New England, CIRA will continue to support and expand the New England HIV Implementation Science Network, a regional network of HIV researchers and service providers established in 2014 to focus on the conduct of implementation research in small urban centers with high HIV infection rates, e.g., Providence, RI and New Haven, CT. Network activities will augment other efforts to address implementation gaps in the National HIV/AIDS Strategy by supporting the development and implementation of effective HIV interventions tailored to small cities/towns and other understudied communities.
  2. Expand and disseminate scientific knowledge on the prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS in small urban areas, including research generated by the New England HIV Implementation Science Network. While focusing on the New England region, the Center will seek to generate studies with findings of potential applicability to other highly impacted areas. Our research will focus on drivers of the epidemic and use the expertise of CIRA scientists to address the intertwined issues of substance use, mental health and stigma, and the impact of the current opioid epidemic on HIV risk and incidence.
  3. Expand international research in resource-poor settings. Our global research will focus on advancing implementation science and cost-effective, sustainable HIV interventions in low resource settings, thus supporting the UNAIDS 90-90-90 goals and priorities in the Trans-NIH Plan for HIV Research.

CIRA's Research

The Center presently has 149 affiliates comprised of HIV scientists representing multiple disciplines, research trainees, community and institutional partners, and provides support to 68 active grants, including 25 international research and training programs. CIRA supports and advances HIV-related implementation science to close the gap between evidence-based HIV prevention and treatment approaches and clinical and community practice. While emphasizing implementation science, CIRA continues to support other innovative, interdisciplinary research, with an emphasis on combination prevention, multi-level approaches, and the integration of clinical, health services, and social-behavioral sciences.