Research

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CCHE’s location within the University of Chicago allows us to move smoothly between research, public health, community intervention, and clinical practice. We combine research and service in one location which allows for efficient bidirectional translation. Research directly informs our practice and our practice informs the research. Our current research focuses on highly at-risk groups in the Chicago area, especially younger black men who have sex with men (YMSM). The projects explore the ways that social networks influence HIV transmission patterns, how social support can affect an individual’s HIV care, and how networks can be leveraged for transformative intervention.

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Our Research

CCHE’s location within the University of Chicago allows us to move smoothly between research, public health, community intervention, and clinical practice. We combine research and service in one location which allows for efficient bidirectional translation.  Research directly informs our practice and our practice informs the research. Our current research focuses on highly at-risk groups in the Chicago area, especially younger black men who have sex men (YMSM). The projects explore the ways that social networks influence HIV transmission patterns, how social support can affect an individual’s HIV care, and how networks can be leveraged for transformative intervention.  

Building Agent Based Models of Racialized Justice Systems (BARS)

This study uses a modeling approach to estimate the effectiveness of HIV prevention interventions for criminal justice involved black men who have sex with men (BMSM).  Because of frequently transient life circumstances, disruption of social and sexual networks, and HIV transmission overlap with other risk groups, criminal justice involved (CJI) BMSM represent an important intervention target. Research to determine intervention impact at these larger social units does not readily lend itself to study via the randomized control trial approach. Utilizing local and national data sources, we will parameterize an Agent Based Model to assess the interplay between social and behavioral factors and viral and host factors adaptive to temporal, network and setting-specific changes on HIV transmission dynamics. The study also involves collecting new data on network shocks and HIV service utilization during critical transition periods of BMSM from the community, to jail, and back to the community/supervision, which will be used to inform model parameters. For more information, please contact Santhoshini Ramani at sramani@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu.

BARS Supplement

To consider how opioid use patterns develop and evolve among YBMSM, we will conduct life course interviews with YBMSM and transwomen in Chicago who have a history of criminal justice involvement.

LINK2

The purpose of this study is to assess outcomes of a novel intervention aiming to improve retention in care, ART adherence, and viral suppression among youth and young adults (ages 16-29) living with HIV who are involved with the criminal-justice system. All participants will complete 3 interviews/surveys over the course of 1 year. If placed in the intervention group participants will receive a navigator that will assist them with their HIV care for 6 months. For more information, please contact MicKayla Jones at mxjones@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu.

JPrEP

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PAC

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NICE

The goal of this study is to explore the impacts of in-person insurance enrollment assistance on HIV care linkage, retention, and insurance uptake. This study will recruit participants frequenting social, political, community-based, and healthcare venues serving men who have sex with men (MSM) and help enroll them in health insurance through Medicaid or the Illinois Marketplace. Results from this study will inform future HIV prevention strategies by illustrating if/ how insurance enrollment should be involved with routine HIV outreach and care. Financial support for this study is provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

For more information, please contact MicKayla Jones at mxjones@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu.

MARI

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N2

The study, entitled “PrEP Uptake and Adherence Among Young Black MSM: Neighborhood and Network Determinants” is a behavioral study. The study goals and aims and other study-related information are described in detailed below.

Study Goals

The Specific Aims for this project are:

Specific Aim 1: Determine the relationship between neighborhood-level factors based on GPS-defined activity space neighborhoods (e.g. poverty, HIV prevalence and access to healthcare services, our primary predictors) and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) uptake and adherence

Specific Aim 2: Characterize the relationship between social and sexual network characteristics (e.g. network size, frequency of communication with network members, and material support, our primary predictors) and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) uptake and adherence

Specific Aim 3: Identify interactive effects of neighborhoods and social and sexual networks on pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) uptake and adherence

For more information, please contact Dana Franklin at dfranklin3@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu. 

StepUp TestUp

The purpose of this study is to assess the feasibility, acceptability and test the initial efficacy of electronic screening and brief intervention (eSBI) for alcohol use couples with “Seek, Test, Treat, Retain” HIV prevention model (STTR; intervention) in comparison to STTR only (attention control) among young men who have sex with men (YMSM) and young transgender women (YTW) in community-based HIV testing environments in Chicago and to assess and describe intervention effects on substance use as well as engagement within the HIV and PrEP care continuum. We will do this with the following aims:

1. Assess the feasibility, acceptability and intial efficacy of electronic Screening & Brief Intervention + Seek, Test, Treat and Retain (eSBI + STTR) compared to STTR-only to reduce alcohol and other substance use among 450 YMSM and YTW in Chicago, ages 16-25.

2. To explore the initial efficacy of eSBI+STTR in comparison to STTR-only on secondary exploratory outcomes within the HIV and PrEP care continuum among YMSM and YTW.

3. Determine the degree to which sub-groups of youth are differentially impacted by eSBI+STTR based on socio-demographic characteristics and co-morbid mental health problems to inform future targeting and/or tailoring of the intervention.

For more information, please contact Santhoshini Ramani at sramani@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu.

P2M

The Phylodynamics-targeted Partner service Models (P2M) project aims to guide and transform the rapidly evolving public health implementation of molecular HIV surveillance (MHS) based prevention interventions as a critical step towards HIV elimination. P2M will expand an established partnership between a trans-disciplinary academic team and local health departments to evaluate next generation public health approaches that will more effectively target combination prevention to limit endemic spread of HIV and prevent future outbreaks. 

For more information, please contact Dr. John Schneider at jschnei1@medicine.bsd.uchicago.edu.

Center for Prevention Implementation Methodology for Drug Abuse and HIV (Ce-PIM)

Under the direction of Dr. C. Hendricks Brown, the Center for Prevention Implementation Methodology for Drug Abuse and HIV (Ce-PIM) works to improve population health through implementation science. Ce-PIM is the only NIH center fully focused on methodology development for the field of implementation science. They pay special attention to addressing disparaties by developing methods that improve the health of minorities and underserved communities.

The BARS project is CCHE’s qualifying R01 grant that is a major focus of Ce-PIM.  Ce-PIM aims to extend the capability and capacity of BARS through implementation science.  We will use our jail model from 3 cities to develop candidate interventions as well as evaluate existing interventions.  The goal is in future phases of BARS to utilize implementation science to develop best strategies for eliminating HIV and other STI transmission among YBMSM.

For more information on Ce-PIM, their mission, aims, research focus, and services/resources provided, please visit their website.

MAARC

Methodology and Advanced Analytics Resource Center

Modeling Patient Navigation to Increase Patient Navigation
Modeling Temporal Facebook Networks for PrEP uptake
Modeling Substance use Interventions for GTZ Illinois
Third Coast Center for AIDS Research (Developmental Core)
NEST

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LITE

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