STD/AIDS Research Training Fellowship Program
Epidemiology & Prevention Interventions for HIV/STD Track
Director: Connie Celum, MD, MPH
Overview: The Epidemiology & Prevention Interventions for HIV/STD Track trains MD and PhD postdoctoral and predoctoral (PhD) fellows for academic careers in STD
and HIV research, teaching, and public health practice. This track is distinct from the Research in HIV/STD Care & Affected Populations Track in that its focus is
on populations at risk for HIV/STD, but not necessarily already infected. Thus, there is a strong emphasis on accurately characterizing these populations, their risks for
acquisition of the pathogens of interest, and interventions to prevent these infections from occurring. Many MD trainees in this track earn MPH degrees, learning clinical
and population-baed epidemiologic methods training. Talented predoctoral students are provided with training in both biomedical and methodological aspects of STD/HIV prevention research.
9 Training Faculty and 3 Junior Training Faculty
Celum, Connie MD, MPH Track Co-Director, Training
Dr. Celum's primary research focus is HIV prevention
clinical trials, including HSV-2 interventions, microbicides, pre-exposure prophylaxis,
and HIV vaccine trials, as well as HIV and STD epidemiology. She is Principal
Investigator of the UW HIV Prevention Trials Unit since 1996, is Co-investigator
of the FHCRC HIV Vaccine Trials Unit and is Co-PI of the Microbicides Trial
Network Leadership Group. She is the Principal Investigator of two multi-center
international randomized, double-blind efficacy trials to assess whether suppression
of genital herpes can reduce HIV susceptibility (HPTN 039, NIH) and infectiousness
(Partners in Prevention, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation).
Andrasik, Michele PhD Training Faculty
Dr. Andrasik is committed to developing collaborative relationships between researchers and community members and has extensive
expertise utilizing Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) and Qualitative research methods and working with communities and
community organizations. Her work has focused on addressing disparities in HIV and other STD in marginalized communities. Most
of her work has focused on the African American community, men who have sex with men and male-to-female transgender individuals.
Baeten, Jared MD, PhD Training Faculty
Research focuses on epidemiologic studies of HIV/STD transmission and clinical trials of HIV prevention interventions. He co-chairs
the Partners PrEP Study, which demonstrated that emtricitabine/tenofovir pre-exposure prophylaxis provided 75% protection against
heterosexual HIV acquisition. Linked projects include a large observational study of PrEP adherence and laboratory analyses of
innate and adaptive immune responses related to PrEP. Other projects include a) a phase III trial of dapivirine vaginal ring for
HIV prevention in women (MTN-020/ASPIRE), b) implementation studies of combination HIV prevention, c) epidemiologic studies
exploring use of hormonal contraception as an HIV risk factor, and d) demonstration projects to deliver antiretroviral treatment
and PrEP for HIV prevention in African HIV serodiscordant couples.
Brown, Elizabeth ScD, MS Training Faculty
Dr. Brown designs clinical trials to assess HIV prevention strategies. She is developing new statistical methods to help elucidate
efficacy from effectiveness in these trials. These methods reflect the heterogeneity in risk inherent in populations where HIV is
highly prevalent. This heterogeneity is largely unaccounted for in current methods used to estimate the effectiveness of an
intervention in preventing HIV infection. Additionally, she is developing models for evaluating the transition between HIV risk
categories over time based on behavioral and biological data.
Golden, Matthew MD, MPH Training Faculty
Dr. Golden directs a research team that focuses on operational, clinical, and public health research related to STD, including HIV.
The team seeks to train junior investigators for careers that integrate public health practice and research. Current areas of
research include expedited partner therapy; the epidemiology and treatment of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, particularly antimicrobial
resistant N. gonorrhoeae; serosorting among men who have sex with men; STD clinic operations research and the role of technology
in improving efficiency; and the natural history of male homosexuality and STD acquisition over the life course.
Hughes, Jim PhD, MSc Training Faculty
Dr. Hughes' methodological research focuses on the design of community level clinical trials and observational studies for HIV
prevention. In particular, he is working on methods for the analysis of data from stepped wedge community randomized trials that
may include delayed effects and/or interval censored outcome measurements. He also has an ongoing interest in methods for
misclassified outcome data and is currently working on methods for estimating survival models based on misclassified data.
Manhart, Lisa PhD, MPH Training Faculty
Research focuses on clinical and behavioral epidemiology of STD, especially Mycoplasma genitalium. She has recently begun work to
identify novel pathogens associated with male urethritis using a metagenomic approach. In collaboration with the Social Development
Research Group she studies early life and genetic factors influencing sexual risk behaviors in two ongoing NIDA-funded cohorts. In
India, Dr. Manhart is studying the relationship between HIV-related stigma, mental health and care-seeking behavior; and methods
to assess and treat depression in HIV-infected patients.
Wald, Anna MD, MPH Training Faculty
Research centers on epidemiology, natural history, and immunobiology of herpesvirus infections in immunocompetent and immunocompromised
hosts. Current projects focus on the biology and epidemiology of HSV acquisition and transmission; the immunopathology of mucosal
and ganglionic HSV infection; strategies for prevention of sexual and perinatal HSV transmission; and understanding the biology of
interactions between HIV and HSV-2. Additional ongoing research includes the role of chronic viral infections, especially CMV, on
immunosenescence in healthy and immunocompromised hosts, and the development of prophylactic and therapeutic vaccines for viral
Walters, Karina PhD Training Faculty
Dr. Walters has conducted extensive mixed methodological research (qualitative and survey methods) related to mental health,
physical health, HIV risk prevention, and substance use with American Indian and Alaska Native populations throughout the country.
The primary focus is on elucidating the factors associated with the intergenerational transmission of trauma, identification of
culturally protective factors in stress-coping processes as well as methodological innovation, including development of culturally
based measures and innovative sampling methods to access difficult-to-reach populations.
Dombrowski, Julie MD, MPH Junior Training Faculty
Research is primarily focused on measuring and improving engagement in HIV care and viral suppression among persons living with
HIV/AIDS in the US. She is currently leading the implementation and evaluation of a surveillance-guided public health intervention
designed to improve engagement in HIV care and antiretroviral use among HIV-infected persons in Washington State. In addition, she
conducts research on STD care and treatment, including the operational aspects of using a computer- assisted self-interview for the
collection of medical history in routine STD care.
Johnston, Christine MD, MPH Junior Training Faculty
Research interests are focused on pathogenesis of chronic genital herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection. The team's intensive
clinical research protocols utilize the detection of herpes simplex virus (HSV) from mucosal surfaces ("shedding") as a marker of
viral reactivation. We have completed a novel study to map the anatomic localization of subclinical genital HSV reactivation, and
to characterize the immune response at these sites. We have demonstrated that high dose acyclovir and valacyclovir are not able to
suppress short episodes of genital HSV-2 shedding, suggesting that more potent therapies are needed to prevent HSV reactivation and
Winer, Rachel PhD, MPH Junior Training Faculty
Research focuses on epidemiology and prevention of HPV infections and HPV- related cancers. Current projects focus on the
epidemiology and natural history of HPV infections across the lifespan, and the feasibility of self-collected vaginal specimens for
HPV testing. Populations of interest include female online daters (determine risk factors for new infections in women with new sex
partners), 30-50 year old women at the University of Washington (to determine the frequency and risk factors for HPV reactivation
in mid-adulthood), and Native American women (to explore feasibility and acceptability of HPV self-sampling).
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