"Will the way PrEP is explained impact understanding and risk perception?"

Funded by:
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Grant #: R01MH095565
Dates: 09/2011 - 06/2014
PI: Sarit A. Golub, PhD, MPH

Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) is a strategy that involves the use of anti-HIV medications (also called antiretrovirals, or ARVs) by HIV-negative individuals to reduce the risk of HIV infection via sexual exposure. In 2012, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the drug, Truvada, for daily oral use as PrEP.

PrEPARE NYC (PrEP Awareness, Research, and Education for New York City) is designed to examine different ways of presenting information about PrEP to people who might be interested in using it and to find out what types of messages have the best impact on understanding, acceptability, and risk perception. We want to raise awareness about PrEP among men in NYC and learn from them about what they need to make decisions about their health.

"How do our internal conflicts about sexuality shape risk behavior and substance use?"

Funded by:
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute on Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
Grant #: R01HD061410
Dates: 08/2010 - 06/2014
PI: Sarit A. Golub, PhD, MPH & Jeffrey T. Parsons, PhD (MPI Plan)

The Drinking and Sexual Health (DASH) Project investigates the ways in which internal conflict about sexuality (e.g., between competing desires, personal values, and perceived social norms) impacts risk-taking. We know that alcohol use is often a factor in sexual behavior; this project examines the ways in which drinking (and expectations about the effects of alcohol on decision-making) influence risk-taking. DASH integrates theoretical models including Alcohol Myopia Theory (Steele & Joseph, 1990) and Expectancy Theory (Dermen & Cooper, 1994) to test a new conceptual model, called Conflict Motivation Theory, to explain sexual behavior that occurs under the influence of alcohol. Specifically, DASH focuses on emerging adults (i.e., young people between the ages of 18 and 29) and follows them for 24 months.

The study is being conducted in collaboration with the Center for HIV Educational Studies and Training (CHEST); click here for more information.

"How do decision-making styles impact HIV risk?"

Funded by:
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Grant #: R21DA026792
Dates: 05/2009 - 09/2011
PI: Sarit A. Golub, PhD, MPH

The Decisions About Risk-Taking (DART) Project was designed to examine the way in which different approaches to decision-making impact HIV risk behavior. We know that people's brains process information about risk (and consequences) in different ways, and we are trying to identify patterns that are associated with both high and low levels of HIV risk. Using a variety of computer-based decision-making tasks, this study sought to identify strategies that may help both HIV-positive and HIV-negative people make good (and safe) decisions about sexual behavior and substance use.