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Concomitant Socioeconomic, Behavioral, and Biological Factors Associated with the Disproportionate HIV Infection Burden among Black Men Who Have Sex with Men in 6 U.S. Cities

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      Abstract

      BackgroundAmerican Black men who have sex with men (MSM) are disproportionately affected by HIV, but the factors associated with this concentrated epidemic are not fully understood.MethodsBlack MSM were enrolled in 6 US cities to evaluate a multi-component prevention intervention, with the current analysis focusing on the correlates of being newly diagnosed with HIV compared to being HIV-uninfected or previously diagnosed with HIV.ResultsHPTN 061 enrolled 1553 Black MSM whose median age was 40; 30% self-identified exclusively as gay or homosexual, 29% exclusively as bisexual, and 3% as transgender. About 1/6th (16.2%) were previously diagnosed with HIV (PD); of 1263 participants without a prior HIV diagnosis 7.6% were newly diagnosed (ND). Compared to PD, ND Black MSM were younger (p<0.001); less likely to be living with a primary partner (p<0.001); more likely to be diagnosed with syphilis (p<0.001), rectal gonorrhea (p = 0.011) or chlamydia (p = 0.020). Compared to HIV-uninfected Black MSM, ND were more likely to report unprotected receptive anal intercourse (URAI) with a male partner in the last 6 months (p<0.001); and to be diagnosed with syphilis (p<0.001), rectal gonorrhea (p = 0.004), and urethral (p = 0.025) or rectal chlamydia (p<0.001). They were less likely to report female (p = 0.002) or transgender partners (p = 0.018). Multivariate logistic regression analyses found that ND Black MSM were significantly more likely than HIV-uninfected peers to be unemployed; have STIs, and engage in URAI. Almost half the men in each group were poor, had depressive symptoms, and expressed internalized homophobia.ConclusionsND HIV-infected Black MSM were more likely to be unemployed, have bacterial STIs and engage in URAI than other Black MSM. Culturally-tailored programs that address economic disenfranchisement, increase engagement in care, screen for STIs, in conjunction with safer sex prevention interventions, may help to decrease further transmission in this heavily affected community.

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      Most cited references 12

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      Sexual transmission of HIV according to viral load and antiretroviral therapy: systematic review and meta-analysis.

      To synthesize the evidence on the risk of HIV transmission through unprotected sexual intercourse according to viral load and treatment with combination antiretroviral therapy (ART). Systematic review and meta-analysis. We searched Medline, Embase and conference abstracts from 1996-2009. We included longitudinal studies of serodiscordant couples reporting on HIV transmission according to plasma viral load or use of ART and used random-effects Poisson regression models to obtain summary transmission rates [with 95% confidence intervals, (CI)]. If there were no transmission events we estimated an upper 97.5% confidence limit. We identified 11 cohorts reporting on 5021 heterosexual couples and 461 HIV-transmission events. The rate of transmission overall from ART-treated patients was 0.46 (95% CI 0.19-1.09) per 100 person-years, based on five events. The transmission rate from a seropositive partner with viral load below 400 copies/ml on ART, based on two studies, was zero with an upper 97.5% confidence limit of 1.27 per 100 person-years, and 0.16 (95% CI 0.02-1.13) per 100 person-years if not on ART, based on five studies and one event. There were insufficient data to calculate rates according to the presence or absence of sexually transmitted infections, condom use, or vaginal or anal intercourse. Studies of heterosexual discordant couples observed no transmission in patients treated with ART and with viral load below 400 copies/ml, but data were compatible with one transmission per 79 person-years. Further studies are needed to better define the risk of HIV transmission from patients on ART.
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        Estimated HIV Incidence in the United States, 2006–2009

        Background The estimated number of new HIV infections in the United States reflects the leading edge of the epidemic. Previously, CDC estimated HIV incidence in the United States in 2006 as 56,300 (95% CI: 48,200–64,500). We updated the 2006 estimate and calculated incidence for 2007–2009 using improved methodology. Methodology We estimated incidence using incidence surveillance data from 16 states and 2 cities and a modification of our previously described stratified extrapolation method based on a sample survey approach with multiple imputation, stratification, and extrapolation to account for missing data and heterogeneity of HIV testing behavior among population groups. Principal Findings Estimated HIV incidence among persons aged 13 years and older was 48,600 (95% CI: 42,400–54,700) in 2006, 56,000 (95% CI: 49,100–62,900) in 2007, 47,800 (95% CI: 41,800–53,800) in 2008 and 48,100 (95% CI: 42,200–54,000) in 2009. From 2006 to 2009 incidence did not change significantly overall or among specific race/ethnicity or risk groups. However, there was a 21% (95% CI:1.9%–39.8%; p = 0.017) increase in incidence for people aged 13–29 years, driven by a 34% (95% CI: 8.4%–60.4%) increase in young men who have sex with men (MSM). There was a 48% increase among young black/African American MSM (12.3%–83.0%; p<0.001). Among people aged 13–29, only MSM experienced significant increases in incidence, and among 13–29 year-old MSM, incidence increased significantly among young, black/African American MSM. In 2009, MSM accounted for 61% of new infections, heterosexual contact 27%, injection drug use (IDU) 9%, and MSM/IDU 3%. Conclusions/Significance Overall, HIV incidence in the United States was relatively stable 2006–2009; however, among young MSM, particularly black/African American MSM, incidence increased. HIV continues to be a major public health burden, disproportionately affecting several populations in the United States, especially MSM and racial and ethnic minorities. Expanded, improved, and targeted prevention is necessary to reduce HIV incidence.
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          Comparisons of disparities and risks of HIV infection in black and other men who have sex with men in Canada, UK, and USA: a meta-analysis.

          We did a meta-analysis to assess factors associated with disparities in HIV infection in black men who have sex with men (MSM) in Canada, the UK, and the USA. We searched Embase, Medline, Google Scholar, and online conference proceedings from Jan 1, 1981, to Dec 31, 2011, for racial comparative studies with quantitative outcomes associated with HIV risk or HIV infection. Key words and Medical Subject Headings (US National Library of Medicine) relevant to race were cross-referenced with citations pertinent to homosexuality in Canada, the UK, and the USA. Data were aggregated across studies for every outcome of interest to estimate overall effect sizes, which were converted into summary ORs for 106,148 black MSM relative to 581,577 other MSM. We analysed seven studies from Canada, 13 from the UK, and 174 from the USA. In every country, black MSM were as likely to engage similarly in serodiscordant unprotected sex as other MSM. Black MSM in Canada and the USA were less likely than other MSM to have a history of substance use (odds ratio, OR, 0·53, 95% CI 0·38-0·75, for Canada and 0·67, 0·50-0·92, for the USA). Black MSM in the UK (1·86, 1·58-2·18) and the USA (3·00, 2·06-4·40) were more likely to be HIV positive than were other MSM, but HIV-positive black MSM in each country were less likely (22% in the UK and 60% in the USA) to initiate combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) than other HIV-positive MSM. US HIV-positive black MSM were also less likely to have health insurance, have a high CD4 count, adhere to cART, or be virally suppressed than were other US HIV-positive MSM. Notably, despite a two-fold greater odds of having any structural barrier that increases HIV risk (eg, unemployment, low income, previous incarceration, or less education) compared with other US MSM, US black MSM were more likely to report any preventive behaviour against HIV infection (1·39, 1·23-1·57). For outcomes associated with HIV infection, disparities were greatest for US black MSM versus other MSM for structural barriers, sex partner demographics (eg, age, race), and HIV care outcomes, whereas disparities were least for sexual risk outcomes. Similar racial disparities in HIV and sexually transmitted infections and cART initiation are seen in MSM in the UK and the USA. Elimination of disparities in HIV infection in black MSM cannot be accomplished without addressing structural barriers or differences in HIV clinical care access and outcomes. None. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1 ]The Fenway Institute of Fenway Health and the Infectious Disease Division of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, United States of America
            [2 ]Vaccine and infectious Disease Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, Washington, United States of America
            [3 ]Laboratory of Infectious Disease Prevention, New York Blood Center, New York, New York, United States of America
            [4 ]Department of Medicine, Harlem Hospital and Columbia University, New York, New York, United States of America
            [5 ]The Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, George Washington University, Washington, DC, United States of America
            [6 ]Department of Global Health and Emory Center for AIDS Research, Emory University Rollins School of Public Health, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America
            [7 ]HIV Research Section San Francisco Department of Health, San Francisco, California, United States of America
            [8 ]Department of Human Development, Binghamton University, Binghamton, New York, United States of America
            [9 ]Department of Pathology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America
            [10 ]Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America
            [11 ]FHI 360, Durham, North Carolina, United States of America
            [12 ]School of Social Work, Loyola University Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, United States of America
            Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wuhan Institute of Virology, China
            Author notes

            ¶ Membership of the HPTN 061 Protocol Team is provided in the Acknowledgments.

            Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

            Performed the experiments: KHM BK SM MM CDR SB CG SHE WC CCW SG. Analyzed the data: L. Wang TY CM. Contributed reagents/materials/analysis tools: L. Wilton DW CCW EP VC CG SHE. Wrote the paper: KHM BK DW SHE L. Wang. Reviewed manuscript and offered comments and revisions: SM MM CDR SB CG WC EP CCW SG L. Wang L. Wilton.

            Contributors
            Role: Editor
            Journal
            PLoS One
            PLoS ONE
            plos
            plosone
            PLoS ONE
            Public Library of Science (San Francisco, USA )
            1932-6203
            2014
            31 January 2014
            : 9
            : 1
            3909083
            PONE-D-13-26608
            10.1371/journal.pone.0087298
            (Editor)

            This is an open-access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication.

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            Pages: 10
            Funding
            HPTN 061 grant support was provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID), National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH): Cooperative Agreements UM1 AI068619, UM1 AI068617, and UM1 AI068613. Additional site funding was provided by the Fenway Institute CRS: Harvard University CFAR (P30 AI060354) and CTU for HIV Prevention and Microbicide Research (UM1 AI069480). Further support came from the George Washington University CRS: District of Columbia Developmental CFAR (P30 AI087714); Harlem Prevention Center CRS and NY Blood Center/Union Square CRS: Columbia University CTU (5U01 AI069466) and ARRA funding (3U01 AI069466-03S1). This project received support from the Hope Clinic of the Emory Vaccine Center CRS and The Ponce de Leon Center CRS: Emory University HIV/AIDS CTU (5U01 AI069418), CFAR (P30 AI050409) and CTSA (UL1 RR025008). Finally, this paper was also supported by the San Francisco Vaccine and Prevention CRS: ARRA funding (3U01 AI069496-03S1, 3U01 AI069496-03S2) in addition to the UCLA Vine Street CRS: UCLA Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases CTU (U01 AI069424). The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
            Categories
            Research Article
            Biology
            Population Biology
            Epidemiology
            Infectious Disease Epidemiology
            Medicine
            Epidemiology
            Infectious Disease Epidemiology
            Infectious Diseases
            Sexually Transmitted Diseases
            AIDS
            Viral Diseases
            HIV
            HIV epidemiology
            HIV prevention
            Non-Clinical Medicine
            Health Care Policy
            Health Risk Analysis
            Public Health
            Behavioral and Social Aspects of Health

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