Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment (Academic Year 2015/16)

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The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection and its strong impact on the world's population have meant a quantitative and qualitative change in research on retrovirology. Advances in the last 25 years have allowed to expand our knowledge about this virus and to define treatment regimens while establishing the bases for the development of vaccines and eradication strategies. Human retrovirology has become one of the most dynamic areas of biomedicine and its strong development requires specialized professionals with extensive virological and immunological knowledge.

The Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment provides a broad view of the fields of virology and immunology, and explores in depth the antiretroviral treatment and the paths for virus eradication. Furthermore, it gives special emphasis on other retrovirus and their potential implications in different human pathologies.

The Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) and the Escola Universitària d’Infermeria i Fisioteràpia Gimbernat in collaboration with the Institut de Recerca de la Sida IrsiCaixa strive to provide an excellent education with a global perspective by acquiring specific skills and competences. Graduates will be capable to develop their career path in multicultural and multidisciplinary working groups from international research organisations, in pharmaceutical companies or to provide technical advice on advanced instrumentation and adaptation of processes to develop new techniques.

The programme is structured in seven modules that deal in depth with topics like the cellular and molecular bases of HIV type 1 (HIV-1) infection and its associated pathogenesis, fundamental clinical aspects of the infection, emphasising antiretroviral treatment recommendations and resistance to antiretroviral drugs, interactions, similarities and differences between HIV and other related viruses, and the present, past and future of HIV vaccine trials.

In order to reinforce its global orientation, and keep its students up to date on HIV research, the programme includes a module on current lines of research at some of the main research centres in the world, combining lectures, seminars and/or conferences offered by researchers from some international collaborators centres such as the Ragon Institute (MGH, MIT and Harvard), the Section of Retroviral Therapeutics of the Brigham and Women 's Hospital (Harvard Medical School), the Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine (University of Miami) and the Centre for AIDS Research (University of California, San Diego).

The module on HIV research also includes knowledge about scientific management, with the aim to provide to students basic knowledge complementary to develop a successful research career. Thus, the module offers an overview of all aspects of research, from the idea generation and the design of a project, including finding financial resources, implementation and closure. It also puts emphasis on innovation management and knowledge throughout the life cycle of a project (protection of results, effective technology transfer, etc.), and formulas of product development. Finally, the students are challenged to think about the interaction between science and society, and the importance of developing a scientific activity to respond to existing and emerging challenges of the society.


IrsiCaixa gimbernat


Gilead MSD

Competences related to the different modules of the Master in AIDS pathogenesis and treatment


  • Acquire and understand the knowledge that brings a base or opportunity to be original in the development and/or application of ideas, often in a research context.
  • Apply the acquired knowledge and the conflict resolution capacity in new and barely known environment within broader contexts (or multidisciplinary) related to an specific research area.
  • Be capable of integrating knowledge and confront the complexity of judgement formulation from incomplete information by including reflexion on social and ethical implications of the application of such judgements.
  • Be able to communicate conclusions reasonably to specialized and non-specialized public in a clear and concise manner.
  • Get the learning skills that allow self-learning


  • Work in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams.
  • Use useful sources of information gathering and integrate them to solve problems in the professional activity.
  • Design, organise, plan, manage and ensure the fulfilment of projects being capable of analysing, understanding and summarizing data and information.
  • Structure publications and scientific communications .
  • Recognise and use english terms related to HIV.


  • Recognise and analyse HIV related problems, propose solutions and/or actions for its resolution
  • Describe and apply the most innovative laboratory techniques in virology and immunology research
  • Design an experimental process from sampling to data processing and evaluation of results
  • Recognise virological, immunological and clinical bases in HIV infection
  • Describe the basic elements related to HIV infection clinical practice.
  • Analyse the HIV-1 diversity and related it with other retrovirus
  • Describe the basic elements of drug and vaccines design related to HIV
  • Identify the means of scientific knowledge translation to society


The main objective of the Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment is to provide professionals with the competences and knowledge required on the virology and immunology fields, facing the new challenges of development in the area of retrovirology research. Thus, the general objectives of the master are:

  • To familiarize students with the most innovative techniques on retrovirology research
  • To acquire the capacity to critically evaluate results with scientific rigor
  • To prepare reports on the work undertaken and defend the results obtained
  • To give new graduates the opportunity to learn the overall functioning of HIV research.
  • To help recent graduates to join the labour market


  • R+D projects
  • Doctoral studies
  • Multidisciplinary teams in the pharmaceutical industry
  • Research teams
  • Technical consultancy on advanced instruments
  • Adaptation of processes for new techniques.


Dr. Bonaventura Clotet
Director of the Institute for AIDS Research IrsiCaixa
President of the Fight Against AIDS Foundation
Codirector of the HIVACAT Program for HIV/AIDS vaccine development
Head of the HIV Unit at the Hospital Universitari Germans Trias i Pujol
Professor of Medicine at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB)


Module 1

Virological, immunological and clinical bases

Module subjects:
Virology and retrovirology
Functional anatomy of immune response
Basic and applied Immunopathogenesis
Immunology in HIV-1 infection
Immunopathogenesis in HIV-1 Infection
Host genomics in HIV-1 Infection

Module 2

Antiretroviral treatment

Module subjects:
Introduction to HIV infection clinical practice
Methodological basis of clinical research
Evidence-based antiretroviral therapy
Antiretroviral toxicity and complications of HIV infection
Antiretroviral drug resistance

Module 3

HIV related viruses

Module subjects:
HIV and HIV-2 diversity
Co-infections (HCV, HBV, HPV)
Other human and non-human retroviruses (HTLV, XMRV)

Module 4

Development of therapeutic and preventive HIV vaccine

Module subjects:
Cellular immunity
Humoral immunity
HIV vaccines in clinical Trials
Vaccine related eradication strategies

Module 5

HIV Research: Innovation and Project Management in a Responsible Research Environment

Module subjects:
HIV/AIDS State-of-the-art
Project Management
Innovation & Knowledge Management
Responsible Research & Innovation

Module 6


Module subjects:

Module 7

Master’s Thesis

Module subjects:
Development of a research project which will be evaluated by a collegiate tribunal


To have a degree in the field of Biomedical Sciences: Biology, Biochemistry, Veterinary Medicine or equivalent degree awarded by a university.


To provide a proof of English and / or Spanish knowledge (Level B2 or higher, of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR)), by certificate or by submitting a Language Passport EUROPASS.


In case the number of applicants exceeds the number of places available, the allocation of places will be made according to the following criteria of priority:

  • Academic record: 70%
  • Letter of motivation: 20%
  • Knowledge of English and / or Spanish level B3 (MERC): 10%

Candidates may be called for a personal interview if the coordinator considers it convenient.


1st application period (60% of places)
From 01-04-2015 to 15-05-2015

2nd application period (other vacancies)
From 25-05-2015 to 10-07-2015

3rd application period
From 13-07-2015 to 11-09-2015

Candidates must submit by email to Eulàlia Grau, the following documentation:

  1. Enrolment Application Form
  2. Transcript of academic records with the following details: subjects, credits (or hours) per subject, qualification per subject and overall qualification
  3. Bachelor degree certificate (or equivalent). If it is not available at the time of application, it may be presented later.
  4. ID (Identity card, passport, NIE ...)
  5. Curriculum vitae
  6. Language (English and/or Spanish) level certificate
  7. Motivation letter

If the candidate has a degree obtained at a foreign university must take into account:

The documentation concerning academic issues issued by European Union institutions from countries that have signed the Agreement on the European Economic Area and Switzerland must be official and issued by the competent authorities.

The documentation concerning academic issues issued by non-EU countries must be official, issued by the competent authorities and must be legalized through diplomatic channels or, if applicable, by the apostille of Hague Convention or Andrés Bello Convention.

Translation of documents issued abroad:

Documents issued in Catalan, Spanish or English are accepted. Regarding documents issued in French, Italian or Portuguese, the UAB Language Service offers the possibility to translate them into one of the languages accepted. Applicant must take in charge the processing and the costs. In other cases, applicant must attach the corresponding translation into Catalan, Spanish or English, made by a sworn translator, by any diplomatic or consular representation of Spain abroad, or by the diplomatic or consular representation of the applicant’s country of origin in Spain.

If the candidate does not have yet the official degree at the moment of application, must mention it specifically.


After each application period, a Master’s Commission verifies the requirement compliance of every candidate, and resolves the admission of applicants. The resolution of this Commission is notified to the candidates by email.


To be enrolled, students must have previously been admitted to the program. The program office will duly inform the students admitted on the procedure to follow to complete the enrolment.


The cost of the Master in Pathogenesis and Treatment of AIDS is 100 € / credit.

The total cost of the program is € 6,000. This price includes theoretical classes and internship.


Students of this master can benefit from the possibility of deferred payment for five months without any charge. It is a direct financing, "without intermediaries", offered by the School of Nursing and Physiotherapy Gimbernat:

  • € 1,800 - first payment
  • and five monthly payments of € 840 each

Moreover, students can apply for some grants as the following:

For any academic-administrative inquiry, please contact with:

Mrs. Eulàlia Grau
Program Office
Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment
Institute for AIDS Research IrsiCaixa
Phone: +34 934 656 374


Official Master*
* The Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment, has been verified positively by The Catalan University Quality Assurance Agency (AQU Catalunya) on 31 May 2013




from 13/10/2015 to 30/06/2016


60 credits


From 6 to 10


Catalan (40%), Spanish (40%) and English (20%).


Candidates willing to undertake the Master in AIDS Pathogenesis and Treatment must hold an university degree in the biomedicine field: Biology, Biochemistry, Veterinary, Medicine or equivalent degrees.

Suitable personal characteristics are:

  • Ability to work in multidisciplinary and multicultural teams
  • Active participation in the classroom
  • Ability to work independently and interest in knowledge update
  • Good oral and written communication
  • Interest in virology and immunology

Moreover, it is considered very important the knowledge of English and Spanish. Applicants must have the appropriate level to be able to follow a lecture, debate, etc. (Level B2 or higher of the Common European Framework of Reference).