Three U.S. scientists will receive the 2014 Avant-Garde Award for HIV/AIDS Research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), according to a NIDA statement. Each will get $500,000 per year for five years to support research for the prevention or treatment of HIV/AIDS in drug users.

The NIDA awardees are Stephen Waggoner, PhD, of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center; Heinrich Gottlinger, MD, of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester; and Melanie Ott, MD, PhD, of the Gladstone Institutes, San Francisco.

Waggoner is pursuing a new vaccine approach to prevent HIV among drug users. Gottlinger is exploring a mechanism of HIV transmission from infected cells to uninfected cells, which could be especially relevant for injection drug users. Ott is looking at the role an enzyme on accelerated immune aging in HIV-positive drug users.

To read the statement, click here.