Nilu Goonetilleke is an assistant professor in the Department of Microbiology and Immunology within the UNC School of Medicine. She studies the immune cell response to several major human infections, like HIV, and develops strategies to limit the causes and spread of disease.
After Myron Cohen watched the first patient at UNC Hospitals die from AIDS in 1982, he knew it was a disease to be reckoned with. He spent the next 40 years helping to recruit the most promising infectious disease experts from across the nation to build a program that’s become a leader in HIV. Today, UNC excels in understanding all aspects of HIV, from prevention to a potential cure — expertise that is now being used to tackle COVID-19.
UNC began treating blood disorders in 1947 — setting the stage for major breakthroughs in hemophilia and HIV
Senior Blake Hauser is double-majoring in environmental health sciences and biology, with a minor in chemistry. In January, she received the Churchill Scholarship, a research-focused award that provides funding to American students for a year of master’s study in science, mathematics, and engineering at the University of Cambridge. Her research focuses on the continuum of care for mothers diagnosed with HIV during pregnancy and the implementation of antiretroviral drugs that can help suppress the virus.
The story of UNC’s decades-long fight against HIV and its implications for the battle against other deadly diseases.