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The HIV/STD Laboratory Core of the UNC CFAR offers services and collaborations to HIV researchers for their basic and clinical research projects. The Core provides a GCLP environment for specimen processing and testing.

The HIV/STD Laboratory Core consults and collaborates with researchers at UNC-CH, RTI International, and FHI 360 (as well as outside researchers). Our contributions to recent research projects include:

  • Developing Flow Cytometry Assays And Cytokine Elisa And Multiplex Bead Array Panels
  • Providing Instrumentation, E.G. Elispot Reader
  • Sequencing Of Hiv From Patients
  • Testing New Microbiologic Diagnostic Assays On A Variety Of Specimen Types
  • Testing Compounds For Anti-Hiv Activity
  • Measuring Prostate Specific Antigen (Psa) As A Marker Of Sexual Activity
  • Training Of Personnel In Virus Work And Various Assays

The Core serves as a repository for long- and short-term storage of biological specimens from HIV+ patients in the UNC CFAR HIV Clinical Cohort (UCHCC) and maintains a current CDC-USPHS permit for importing HIV+ specimens from foreign countries.

Researchers and clinicians can request services using the button at the top of the page and you can contact us by our email address (

The HIV/STD Laboratory Core is located on the 5th floor of Taylor Hall, which is adjacent to MBRB. The Basic Science part of the Core lab is in 22-059 Lineberger Cancer Center.


Our Core offers processing, storage and shipping of various specimens, including blood (serum, plasma, PBMC), other biological fluids (e.g., saliva, rectal secretions, CSF, urine), dried blood spots, and swabs.

We provide a variety of services:

  • HIV viral load testing
  • rapid testing for SARS-CoV-2, RSV, influenza
  • HIV sequencing
  • HLA testing
  • flow cytometry
  • quantitation of soluble biomarkers (e.g., antibodies, cytokines) by ELISA, multi-parameter bead array (Luminex), or by applying SIMOA technology (Quanterix)
  • molecular assays: RNA, DNA isolation; PCR

Additional services include training, consultations, and assistance in grant writing.

All services are offered at a fee-for-service rate. These costs include supplies and labor, with projects submitted by non-UNC investigators being subject to an additional 55.5% indirect cost-fee.

Please note that the current user rates listed in the table below may not be complete and rates are subject to change.

Services UNC ($) Non-UNC ($)
Abbott VL 172 268
T cell T mag 141 220
ELISPOT outside CFAR 60 94
MagPix/LX200 86 134
Serum with additives 64 100
PBMC to 50ml blood CRS 160 249
1 spin CRS 55 85
2 spin CRS 55 86
Aliquots CRS 55 85
DBS (supplies only) 5 8
Leukopak (handling only) 225 361
HLA test from Histogenetics 195 303
HLA DNA extraction 20 31
Phlebotomy 60 94
Donor recruitment 20 31
Specimen handling 35 54
Dry ice shipping 118 183
LN2 shipping 180 279
Storage in -20 or -80 freezer; per box per month 1 2
Storage in liquid nitrogen freezer; per box per month 2 4
Assay labor 60 93
Analysis 100 156
Consultation 110 172

*Cost will be determined for each project to include kits, supplies, and labor All projects with non-UNC funds will have an additional 55.5% fee