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India: BJ Medical College

The BJMC/Sassoon Hospital Campus is located in the city of Pune (population 4 million) in the state of Maharashtra. The 1300-bed public hospital cares for underserved populations from the surrounding rural and urban communities. The 21 clinics see ~450,000 outpatients per year. BJ Medical College was founded in 1871 and is among the top ten medical colleges in India.

BJMC/Sassoon Hospital has long collaborated with US academic centers including the Mayo Clinic, Vanderbilt University, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and Weill Cornell Medical College. BJMC has received NIH funding for 20 years, resulting in over 100 publications in peer-reviewed journals. In 2006, BJMC successfully competed to become an NIH international HIV clinical trials unit (CTU), with a focus on HIV and co-infections occurring in pregnant women and children. The BJMC CTU completed India’s first NIH-funded phase III trial to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission and is currently conducting five trials as part of the NIH-sponsored AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG) and International Maternal Pediatric Adolescent AIDS Trials Group (IMPAACT).

Dr. Mathad currently leads research at BJMC on latent tuberculosis infection in pregnancy. Over one-third of India’s women carry latent tuberculosis infection, which often progresses to active tuberculosis disease during pregnancy, increasing illness and death for both mothers and their infants. Her research describes the body’s immune response to tuberculosis changes with stage of pregnancy and HIV status. This information will help identify which pregnant women are most likely to develop active TB, improving the diagnosis and prevention of tuberculosis in pregnant women and their infants.

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