URMC Observes HIV Vaccine Awareness Day with Events

May. 12, 2011
Networking and parties as a call to action to raise awareness that the search for an effective vaccine continues.

The University of Rochester Medical Center’s HIV vaccine clinical trials unit, The Rochester Victory Alliance,  will participate in events and activities from May 13 to18, to mark HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, an annual observance to recognize and thank the thousands of volunteers, community members, health professionals, and scientists who are working together to find a safe and effective HIV vaccine. It is also a day to educate communities about the importance of preventive HIV vaccine research. 

Michael Keefer, M.D., director of the Rochester Victory Alliance, has lead URMC's research team for 20 years. He said, “Every year we like to take the opportunity to thank our vaccine volunteers and the Rochester community for their unwavering support because in fact we really cannot make any progress without having people willing to join our studies. As in past years, we continue to work on all phases of studies simultaneously, from small ones with newly-developed vaccines to larger-scale studies that can give us information about potential vaccine effectiveness.” 

The University of Rochester Medical Center was one of the first sites in the nation to conduct HIV vaccine research studies, beginning in 1988. Since then, nearly 1,300 people from the Rochester area have participated in more than 50 vaccine research trials. The Rochester Victory Alliance is a member of the international HIV Vaccine Trials Network, which is supported by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. The Rochester Victory Alliance currently works with HIV vaccine research teams in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and South Africa.

For more information about services or volunteering in a trial, contact the Rochester Victory Alliance at the University of Rochester Medical Center, 601 Elmwood Ave, Rochester, 14642, (585) 756-2329 (756-2DAY) or the Buffalo office at (855) 816-5500. Visit the Rochester Victory Alliance on Facebook at Twitter at

All events are open to the public.

Doors open at 10 p.m., May 12 to14

“A Super-stitious Weekend at Tilt Night Club and Ultra Lounge.”

444 Central Ave., Rochester. Stop by the information table for ‘Tilt Bucks’ and giveaways.

Contact: Cody Gardner, Rochester Victory Alliance (585) 276-5335.

Noon to 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 18

“A Call to Action - Part III: It Takes a Village to Fight HIV/AIDS.

MOCHA Center. 107 Liberty Pole Way, Rochester. Adjacent parking is available.

Contact:  Michael Booth, Mocha Center Rochester (585) 420-1400, ext.19.

1 to 3 p.m., Wednesday, May 18

Coffee house event. Buffalo location TBD

Contact:  Jason Roberts, Rochester Victory Alliance (585) 756-2329, Andy Kiener, AIDS Community Services (716) 847-0212.

1 to 3 p.m., Wednesday, May 18

Open House, “It Takes a Village to Fight HIV/AIDS.
MOCHA Center Buffalo, 1092 Main Street, Buffalo. Parking is available. 
Contact:  DeMarkis Bonner, Mocha Center Buffalo (716) 852-1142, ext 24.

8 p.m. until doors close, Wednesday, May 18

Meet and greet members of the Rochester Victory Alliance outreach team.

Club 140 Alex, 140 Alexander St., Rochester. Parking is available in corner lot.

Contact:  Xavier Serrano, Rochester Victory Alliance (585) 273-1503.