Jeff Kirsch reports that the impact of HIV here has led to the establishment of the Madison AIDS Support Network, which has fielded 165 requests for services in its first six months, along with 1,600 phone calls requesting AIDS-related information. Statewide, 115 AIDS cases have been confirmed, including 18 in Dane County. Rodney Scheel, who owns two popular local gay bars, notes that he has been working with the Blue Bus Clinic to provide his customers with free monthly screenings for sexually transmitted diseases since 1981, and safe-sex literature since 1982. "Back then, there was hardly anything about AIDS reported in the mainstream media," Scheel observes. The UW-Madison's McArdle Institute, meanwhile, has emerged as one of the nation's leading AIDS research facilities. "It is my strong opinion that the dangers from AIDS are more immediate and pressing than many things we are spending a disproportionate amount of money on, such as national defense," says UW professor Howard Temin, a 1975 Nobel laureate. Scheel dies of AIDS-related causes in 1990. Dr. Temin, an anti-smoking advocate and nonsmoker, dies in 1994. Madison AIDS Support Network perseveres as AIDS Network, serving clients in Dane and 12 other southwest Wisconsin counties. HIV/AIDS statistics for Wisconsin put the cumulative number of diagnoses and deaths from 1983 through Sept. 30, 2006 at 9,423 and 3,544, respectively.