Associations between herpes simplex virus type 2 and HCV with HIV among injecting drug users in New York City: The current importance of sexual transmission of HIV

Don Des Jarlais, Kamyar Arasteh, Courtney Mcknight, Holly Hagan, David C. Perlman, Salaam Semaan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objectives: We examined relationships between herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), a biomarker for sexual risk, and HCV, a biomarker for injecting risk, with HIV among injecting drug users (IDUs) who began injecting after large-scale expansion of syringe exchange programs in New York City. Methods: We recruited 337 heroin and cocaine users who began injecting in 1995 or later from persons entering drug detoxification. We administered a structured interview covering drug use and HIV risk behavior and collected serum samples for HIV, HCV, and HSV-2 testing. Results: HIV prevalence was 8%, HSV-2 39%, and HCV 55%. We found a significant association between HSV-2 and HIV (odds ratio [OR]=7.9; 95% confidence interval [CI]=2.9, 21.4) and no association between HCV and HIV (OR=1.14; 95% CI=0.5, 2.6). Black IDUs had the highest prevalence of HSV-2 (76%) and HIV (24%) but the lowest prevalence of HCV (34%). Conclusions: Most HIV infections among these IDUs occurred through sexual transmission. The relative importance of injecting versus sexual transmission of HIV may be critical for understanding racial/ethnic disparities in HIV infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1277-1283
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Volume101
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2011

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Human Herpesvirus 2
Drug Users
HIV
HIV Infections
Biomarkers
Needle-Exchange Programs
Odds Ratio
Confidence Intervals
Heroin
Risk-Taking
Cocaine
Pharmaceutical Preparations
Interviews
Serum

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

Cite this

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title = "Associations between herpes simplex virus type 2 and HCV with HIV among injecting drug users in New York City: The current importance of sexual transmission of HIV",
abstract = "Objectives: We examined relationships between herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), a biomarker for sexual risk, and HCV, a biomarker for injecting risk, with HIV among injecting drug users (IDUs) who began injecting after large-scale expansion of syringe exchange programs in New York City. Methods: We recruited 337 heroin and cocaine users who began injecting in 1995 or later from persons entering drug detoxification. We administered a structured interview covering drug use and HIV risk behavior and collected serum samples for HIV, HCV, and HSV-2 testing. Results: HIV prevalence was 8{\%}, HSV-2 39{\%}, and HCV 55{\%}. We found a significant association between HSV-2 and HIV (odds ratio [OR]=7.9; 95{\%} confidence interval [CI]=2.9, 21.4) and no association between HCV and HIV (OR=1.14; 95{\%} CI=0.5, 2.6). Black IDUs had the highest prevalence of HSV-2 (76{\%}) and HIV (24{\%}) but the lowest prevalence of HCV (34{\%}). Conclusions: Most HIV infections among these IDUs occurred through sexual transmission. The relative importance of injecting versus sexual transmission of HIV may be critical for understanding racial/ethnic disparities in HIV infection.",
author = "{Des Jarlais}, Don and Kamyar Arasteh and Courtney Mcknight and Holly Hagan and Perlman, {David C.} and Salaam Semaan",
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AU - Hagan, Holly

AU - Perlman, David C.

AU - Semaan, Salaam

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N2 - Objectives: We examined relationships between herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), a biomarker for sexual risk, and HCV, a biomarker for injecting risk, with HIV among injecting drug users (IDUs) who began injecting after large-scale expansion of syringe exchange programs in New York City. Methods: We recruited 337 heroin and cocaine users who began injecting in 1995 or later from persons entering drug detoxification. We administered a structured interview covering drug use and HIV risk behavior and collected serum samples for HIV, HCV, and HSV-2 testing. Results: HIV prevalence was 8%, HSV-2 39%, and HCV 55%. We found a significant association between HSV-2 and HIV (odds ratio [OR]=7.9; 95% confidence interval [CI]=2.9, 21.4) and no association between HCV and HIV (OR=1.14; 95% CI=0.5, 2.6). Black IDUs had the highest prevalence of HSV-2 (76%) and HIV (24%) but the lowest prevalence of HCV (34%). Conclusions: Most HIV infections among these IDUs occurred through sexual transmission. The relative importance of injecting versus sexual transmission of HIV may be critical for understanding racial/ethnic disparities in HIV infection.

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