The mission of the You and Me Study is to gain a better understanding of relationship dynamics and the contextual factors that shape them in order to develop interventions to improve the sexual health of men in same-sex relationships. Little health research has focused on same-sex couples, and even fewer studies have included Black and interracial same-sex couples. Talking with couples will allow researchers to better understand the relationship context that men must negotiate as they make decisions that affect their sexual health. Collaboration between academic researchers and community members is a hallmark of the You & Me study and contributions of community members are essential to the development and execution of the study. We know that couples are the experts on their own relationships; by speaking with us and reflecting on their experiences in their relationships, couples are taking an active role in a project that will benefit the community.
The You & Me Study is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and is a collaborative effort among researchers at San Francisco State University, the University of California at San Francisco, and Columbia University. This work is being conducted by a team of researchers in San Francisco and New York, namely Principal Investigator, Dr. Colleen Hoff (SF) and Co-Investigator, Dr. Patrick Wilson (NYC). This research is supported by the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH). Grant R01 MH089276.
Promoting Action Toward Health (PATH) is a randomized-controlled trial that tests the efficacy of an intervention for newly diagnosed HIV-positive men who have sex with men. This study will assess whether participants who receive the experimental intervention achieve greater suppression of HIV viral load, demonstrate greater uptake of care and adherence to treatment, and engage in less sexual HIV transmission risk behavior compared to participants who receive the control intervention. The experimental intervention is an individually focused counseling intervention that focuses on disclosure decision-making, engagement in care, and sexual risk.
PATH is a collaborative study with Yale University and University of Georgia and is implemented by HIV counselors at two community health centers in New York City – Callen-Lorde Community Health Center and Harlem United. PATH is funded through NIMH. Grant R01 MH09651.
The All About You! aims to understand how daily situational barriers and facilitators influence ART adherence among HIV+ Black men who have sex with men (BMSM). This longitudinal study uses daily dairies, participant interviews, and medication event monitoring systems to examine within-person fluctuations in medication adherence, substance use, affect, and stressful experiences and support. The study particularly looks at experiences of acceptance/belonging and rejection/discrimination attributed to stigmatized identities including race, sexual orientation, and HIV status. This formative research will be used to develop a brief, personally tailored proactive planning intervention that HIV+ BMSM can use to improve daily adherence.
This research is supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Grant R34 DA034568
The primary mission of the ATN is to conduct research, both independently and in collaboration with existing research networks and individual investigators, in HIV-infected and HIV-at-risk pre-adolescents, adolescents, and young adults up to age 25 years. Prevention research, not the development of antiretroviral therapy trials, remains a large focus of research for pre-adolescents. Much of the research activity of the ATN focuses on collaboration with the Clinical Trials Networks supported by other institutes of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including but not limited to the Division of AIDS, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) through coordination of research. Grant 5U01 HD040533-12.
In addition to participating in network wide studies and administration, the SPHERE lab coordinates three active protocols at ATN sites. Their descriptions are below.
ATN 112 aims to implement a structured daily diary with HIV-positive men who have sex with men (MSM) to analyze daily fluctuations in mood, stressful events, social support, substance use, sexual behavior, and ART adherence. This study also explores the feasibility and acceptability of using interactive voice response diaries and interactive web response diaries as tools for collecting data and providing personalized feedback to HIV-positive young MSM on risk-behavior triggers.
ATN 104 aims to test the feasibility, acceptability, and potential efficacy of implementing a culturally based group intervention with HIV-positive Black young MSM. This secondary prevention intervention focuses on the critical analysis of media and outcomes related to disclosure, adherence, substance use, and sexual risk behavior.
ATN 086 is a cross-sectional study of HIV-positive youth that aims to understand risk and protective factors in adolescents and young adults infected with HIV and engaged in care through the ATN. Wilson team members are currently using data from ATN 086 to conduct multiple secondary analyses related to disclosure, psychological distress, sexual risk taking, and self-efficacy. Grant 5U01 HD040533-12.
The Multi-Method Study of Cancer Patients’ Medication Adherence After Allogenic Hematopoietic stem-cell transplant (HSCT) studies medication adherence in patients undeargoing a stem cell transplant used in the treatment of blood and lymphoid cancers. After an allogeneic HSCT, patients’ medication regimen is both complex and requires rigorous adherence. This study assesses medication adherence allogeneic HSCT patients during the first six months post treatment using a multi-method approach to examine adherence predictors and strategies. The study uses daily electronic monitoring, drug plasma levels, and self-report to assess adherence with a complex medication regimen. The researchers hope that this study will identify strategies to promote adherence in patients with complex medication regimens who are at risk for non-adherence, including minority patients. This research is funded by the NCI. Grant R03 CA162980-01A1.
This study explores the social and health behaviors of young Black men who have sex with men between the ages of 18-30 in order to inform public health interventions that can improve the health of young Black men. BCS focuses on understanding the social contexts in which health behaviors occur and attitudes are formed, with the aim of closing the health disparity gap in this population. Analysis is ongoing, but from this study we hope to gather a better understanding of the experiences of young Black men and promote health in this population. This study was funded by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), grant U01 PS000700.
This study examines the role of men who have sex with men in shaping responses to HIV in different religious institutions in NYC. The study explores the different types of responses of Catholic and Baptist religious institutions have had to the HIV epidemic in NYC, and examine barriers and facilitators to effective prevention and intervention efforts targeting MSM. This study was funded by the NIH. Grant R01 HD050118-S1.
This pilot study aims to better understand the contexts of sexual risk-taking for HIV-positive MSM by examining the role of substance use and other situational factors, as well as patterns in mental and physical health, in explaining risk behaviors. The findings from the proposed research will inform secondary prevention and treatment interventions targeted toward HIV-positive MSM. Project Logon was funded through development grants from Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDS (CIRA) at Yale University and the Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity Initiatives at Columbia University.C003666076