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Chronology of Rakai Health Sciences Program Studies and Grants


Drs. Sewankambo/Serwadda first conceive of Rakai population cohort


Drs. Sewankambo/Serwadda approach CDC and USAID

USAID approaches Columbia University with a project in Uganda. Dr. Maria Wawer makes the first visit and, together with Drs. Sewankambo and Serwadda, they develop a funding proposal.


Cohort started.

21 clusters of 30 households each, population ~ 1,800 (USAID)


  • HIV Dynamics study funded for three years by NIH
    Cohort expanded: 31 clusters (population ~4,000)


  • Rockefeller grant for counseling, health and education. (Rockefeller Foundation,  NIH)
  • Rakai AIDS Information Network started as an NGO by Rakai Project (DANIDA, USAID)


  • Sexual Networks Study funded for three years (NIH)
  • Preparation for AIDS Vaccine Evaluation (PAVE) funded for two years (NIH)
  • WHO proposal for cohort support funded for one year
  • Mellon Foundation funding for family planning (1992-1996)


  • Fogarty International supports several training grants


  • STD Control for AIDS Prevention funded for five years (NIH)


  • STD Control Trial begins; cohort enlarged (~14,000)
  • Rockefeller grant renewed for four years
  • Pfizer provides free drugs


  • STD Control study continues
  • Maternal Infant Supplementary Study/MISS funded for three years (NIH)
  • World Bank STI project funded


  • USAID/Mother Care proposal funded which adds support for MISS study


  • Family Planning starts (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation)
  • Glaxo Welcome, HSV-2 testing


  • Walter Army Institute of Research grant for three years


  • STD Control/MISS studies end
  • BV study funded for two years
  • Fertility Data Analysis funded for two years (NIH)
  • Opinion Leader Study funded for five years (NIMH)
  • HIV Prevention Trials Network: Rakai is funded as an HPTN site and remains in the network for one year


  • Pediatric AIDS Foundation support for Nevirapine provision


  • Male Circumsion for HIV Prevention (NIAID) funded for five years
  • Randomized Trial of Male Circumcision, STD, HIV and Behavioral Effects in Men, Women and the Community funded for five years(Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation)


  • Infrastructure, Research and Training Support for the Rakai Research Collaboration. Funding to assist with the construction of a new Rakai health sciences center to improve Program’s ability to provide care for HIV+ individuals and for HIV research, and training in HIV care for Rakai physicians and clinical staff (Doris Duke Charitable Foundation)


  • ARV Effects on HIV Epidemiology and Behaviors funded for five years (NICHD)
  • Morbidity/Mortality and Disability in Children Study funded for four years (Fogarty International Center/NIH)


  • International Training/Research in Population and Health, Uganda (Fogarty International Center/NIH)
  • BD Malaria P.f. Rapid Test Evaluation (Becton, Dickinson and Company)


  • Impact of Peer Educators and Mobile Phones on HIV Care (Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; funded for two years)
  • Assessing the Impact of a Community-Based Intervention Designed to Reduce Levels of Physical and Sexual Domestic Violence in Rakai District, Uganda (WHO/Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction)
  • Circumcision: HIV/STIs and Behaviors in an RCT and post-RCT surveillance; Rakai (NIH/NIAID; funded for five years) 


  • Community Effects of Male Circumcision (MC) on HIV Epidemic, with nested MC-related Clinical and Basic Science Research (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; funded for five years)
  • Host Genetic Epidemiology in HIV-1Discordant African Couples and Other Cohorts (NIH through the University of Alabama at Birmingham subcontract; funded for three years)


  • Study of Early Initiation of HAART in Children with HIV Infection in Rakai, Uganda (W.W. Smith Charitable Trust; funded for two years)
  • HIV/HAART and Pregnancy/Contraception in Rakai, Uganda (NINR; funded for three years)
  • Rakai Youth Project (NICHD thought the Columbia University subcontract; funded for four years)  


Voices from Rakai

David Serwadda

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[In Africa] we are truly at a crossroads. If we can invest in prevention, then we have a chance that we may actually reduce both incidence of the disease and make a dent in the epidemic. I really don't think we have invested in antiretroviral education in Africa the way we should have, and there isn't a good companion program at the moment in monitoring resistance. That is the capacity we're starting in Rakai...>

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David Serwadda
Founding Principal Investigator, Rakai Health Sciences Program

Center for Global Health


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Rakai Health Sciences Program

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Uganda Virus Research Institute

National Institute of Health