The key activities of the Developmental Core include cultivating the next generation of AIDS researchers, sparking innovation in AIDS research, and cultivating collaborative trans-disciplinary partnerships, and leveraging CFAR resources. Providing mentoring and funding support will be a key goal of this Core, investing in the future of the CFAR partners: UCLA, CDU, Harbor-UCLA, and the Greater Los Angeles VA. Moreover, because traditional models of siloed research are giving way to multi-disciplinary collaborations that attack difficult research questions from multiple angles, this Core will bring together investigators across disciplines and institutions, and encourage investigators outside AIDS research to join forces with CFAR researchers.

The Core is led by Dr. Risa Hoffman (UCLA) and Dr. Omolola Ogunyemi (CDU). Dr. Raphael Landovitz serves as the Mentoring Core Faculty. Dr. Ferbas (Scientific) and Ms. Lee (Operations) are Managing Directors of the Core. The Aims of the Core are: 

  1. To organize activities that support faculty interactions and mentorship. 
  2. To coordinate and support faculty recruitment to UCLA and CDU. 
  3. To administer a pilot grant funding program. 
  4. To coordinate institutional funds and private fundraising efforts to supplement the activities of the above aims (no support requested).

Core Leadership and Key Staff

Kathie Ferbas, PhD

Kathie Ferbas, PhD

Administrative Core Leadership Group Developmental Core
Risa Hoffman, MD, MPH

Risa Hoffman, MD, MPH

Developmental Core Clinical Science Core
Raphael Landovitz, MD

Raphael Landovitz, MD

Executive Committee Developmental Core
Jina Lee

Jina Lee

Administrative Core Leadership Group Developmental Core
Omolola (Lola) Ogunyemi

Omolola (Lola) Ogunyemi

Developmental Core

Services Offered by the Core

Mentoring Support

Mentorship of young investigators is a major priority of the Developmental Core. Mentorship will be delivered across the career continuum and in a multitude of venues to reach across the entire CFAR membership and allow the Core to serve the needs of all investigators.  Peer mentoring groups have been established for all ESI at all CFAR sites.  Please click here for more information.

Pilot Projects

The UCLA-CDU CFAR provides funding for pilot projects to fund HIV-related research with an emphasis on supporting new investigators and established investigators who are new to HIV research. Each applicant should involve an experienced HIV researcher, for the purpose of guidance and building a fruitful collaboration leading to future competitive funding.  Please click here for more information.

Ongoing Events

    • Bi-Weekly Multidisciplinary Virology Seminar Series
      It is essential for researchers to keep abreast of the work being done by colleagues in a variety of disciplines. To facilitate this, the UCLA-CDU CFAR and the UCLA AIDS Institute sponsors a bi-weekly conference featuring presentations made by researchers working in both basic and translational sciences, clinical therapeutics and biomedical prevention. The topics covered include, among many others, host-virus interactions, novel therapeutics, vaccines, stem-cell research, aging, and viral pathogenesis. The Bi-Weekly Multidisciplinary Virology Seminar Series are held every other Tuesday via Zoom from 9am to 10am (PST).

For more information regarding the Bi-Weekly Multidisciplinary Virology Seminar Series, please click here or contact Rina Lee-Cha at

    • HIV Grand Rounds
      The HIV Grand Rounds series, offered by UCLA-CDU CFAR, UCLA CHIPTS, and the UCLA AIDS Institute, consists of hour-long lunchtime lectures that are delivered by invited guests or distinguished members of the Institute faculty on a broad range of HIV-related topics.The aims of the HIV Grand Rounds series are to:
        • Share the latest research findings on HIV prevention, care, and treatment, and highlight important developments in HIV-related research.
        • Encourage scientific collaborations and networking between UCLA investigators and invited speakers.
        • Excite an interest in HIV/AIDS research for early career investigators, and provide resources about new research findings, funding, and career opportunities.

For more information regarding the HIV Grand Rounds, please click here or contact Rina Lee-Cha at

Contact the Core
Jina Lee, Managing Director, Operations

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