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HHS ALLOCATES $9 MILLION FOR AIDS RESEARCH

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Federal health officials awarded $9 million for community-based AIDS research, an effort they say could involve up to 30,000 AIDS-infected Americans currently excluded from traditional drug tests.

Health and Human Service Secretary Louis Sullivan said this week that contracts for community AIDS studies will go to 18 public clinics, drug addiction centers and other health-care facilities in 14 cities hit hard by the AIDS epidemic."These programs will reach out to blacks, Hispanics, women and intravenous drug users infected by the AIDS virus," said Sullivan, noting those groups have been underrepresented in past tests of AIDS treatments.

The contracts for community research will last five years. The groups will split $9 million in fiscal 1990, with awards ranging in size from $278,000 to $800,000.

The new effort has the potential to involve 30,000 people infected with the AIDS virus, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, a top federal AIDS researcher. About 24 percent of those people are black, 10 percent Hispanic, 21 percent intravenous drug users and more than 8 percent are women, Fauci said.

About 1 million to 1.5 million Americans are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus, which causes AIDS.

The majority of those people are homosexual or bisexual men.