CAIR is a multidisciplinary HIV prevention research center that is supported by a P30 Center grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). CAIR also receives grant support from other sources, including other institutes of the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Wisconsin AIDS/HIV Program, and the Medical College of Wisconsin. The research center is based within the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine.
In 1990, the Medical College of Wisconsin sought to initiate a major new program in HIV prevention research and began the recruitment of an interdisciplinary team of behavioral science, social science, and public health faculty with research backgrounds in HIV prevention areas. In 1994, following the recruitment of this central group of HIV prevention investigators and their linkage with other prevention science faculty already at MCW, the Medical College was awarded a center grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) that established the Center for AIDS Intervention Research (CAIR). CAIR is one of only a handful of dedicated HIV prevention research centers in the country and is the only center of its kind supported by NIMH between the east and west coasts.