Research on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) to Prevent HIV in populations experiencing health disparities (R01-Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Program Description

NIMHD is promoting research in communities and health care settings to understand the individual, interpersonal, community, and societal factors that influence patterns of HIV prevention efforts, particularly pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). The studies will observe attitudes, access, availability, and adherence among populations experiencing health disparities in the United States. Projects may involve primary quantitative and/or qualitative data collection and/or secondary analysis of existing data.

In 2012, the Food and Drug Administration approved the oral PrEP medication Truvada, which can reduce the risk of HIV infection for high-risk adults by over 90%. Early studies show that racial/ethnic minorities and low socioeconomic status populations are less likely to be aware of PrEP as an option or know how to obtain it. When prescribed PrEP, these populations are also less likely to use the medication as indicated. Although new HIV infections occur at a higher rate in young men of color, current PrEP users are disproportionately non-Hispanic White older men. These disparities still exist while financial assistance is available to provide PrEP free or at a reduced cost.

Research is needed to understand how to maximize the potential benefits of PrEP as an HIV prevention strategy for populations experiencing health disparities at an increased risk of infection. A better understanding of why populations experiencing health disparities are less likely to use PrEP may help to develop interventions. Studies are also needed to understand how PrEP use influences HIV and other sexually-transmitted infection (STI) risk behavior (e.g., condom use, PrEP disclosure, partner selection, STI testing, etc.) or contraceptive use. Further research may help identify factors at the individual, clinician, community, and policy levels that affect PrEP initiation in populations experiencing health disparities to inform future interventions.

NIH Guide No.: NIH Guide No.: RFA-MD-18-003

View the list of grantees in NIH RePORTER.

Page updated Jan. 12, 2024