Updates on Efforts to Combat the HIV/AIDS Pandemic

By Elliot Eton (Eton spent a gap year working with HAI in Boston and Botswana. He’s now a freshman at Harvard. This article originally appeared in the Fall 2015 issue of Harvard Science Review.) The target is 2030. The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) has ambitiously set 2030 as the year by which we should achieve the end of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, which has claimed the lives of 39…

Elliot Eton: The Precocious Researcher

Max Essex with Elliot Eton

First he had to convince Max Essex. Elliot Eton had just graduated from high school when he ended up in Essex’s office. After receiving his acceptance letter to Harvard, Elliot assumed he’d begin college in the fall with the other freshmen. Then he read a letter from the Dean of Admissions, encouraging students to consider a gap year.

Finches, Whales, and now HIV

Herman Melville: Moby Dick CC- BY NC 2008 Wolf G.

By Elliot Eton Early on my first morning in Gaborone, I arrived at the Botswana-Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership (BHP) Research Lab and met Dr. Simani Gaseitsiwe, the Deputy Research Director. The night before, I had again reviewed several recently published articles he had sent to me, all analyzing immune system-driven HIV adaptation. He helped me synthesize this material, and we began to consider hypotheses to test.

Touch Down in Botswana: My Gap Year in an HIV/AIDS Lab

Elliot Eton in Botswana

By Elliot Eton I stepped off the plane and onto the tarmac at Sir Seretse Khama Airport in Gaborone, Botswana. It was not as hot and humid as I had expected. After months of preparation, I had finally arrived. I was thrilled! My excitement, though, was not without nervousness. For one, my flight had been delayed. I was wondering if my pick-up ride would still be waiting. For another, I,…