amfAR has joined forces with both Jay Ellis and Andreja Pejic to raise awareness of their “Countdown to Cure AIDS”initiative which aims to build the scientific basis of a cure for AIDS by 2020. amfAR has established a “research roadmap” that identifies the four key scientific challenges that represent the principal roadblocks to a cure: Chart the precise locations of viral reservoirs that persist in the body; Understand how HIV persists in the reservoirs; Record how much virus they hold; and Eliminate the virus.
The most important development has been the case of the Berlin Patient, the first person to be cured of HIV, which was first reported in 2008. The case provided a proof of principle that a cure was possible. Up until that point, AIDS research was largely a process of discovery. Now, knowing the key scientific questions that need to be answered, science is moving into a new phase of problem-solving research.
To raise awarness of both the disease and campaign, amfAR teamed up with famed British visual artist Shantell Martin to bring a limited edition beach towel, designed exclusively for amfAR to help raise awareness and find a cure for HIV/AIDS. The towel’s bold design features one of Martin’s trademark black-and-white illustrations and the inscription, “Be Epic, Cure AIDS,” a nod to amfAR’s “Countdown to a Cure for AIDS” initiative, aimed at developing the scientific basis of a cure by 2020.
This towel is sold exclusively at Scoop NYC locations and on amfAR’s website for $40 with 100% of the proceeds supporting research to find a cure for HIV/AIDS. The towel was also featured in OK Magazine as well along with Heidi Klum’s support.