The mission of the Translational Research on Substance Use (TRSU) Scientific Working Group (SWG) is to engage experts in community engagement to build cutting-edge teams that will generate novel and high impact research at the intersection of Prevention, Treatment and ART-Free Remission and substance use/misuse (SU).
The TRSU SWG moves the CFAR and the field beyond existing approaches for measuring and intervening on substance use/misuse to explore acceptability and implementation challenges at the community level when studying rigorous characterization of direct exposure to substance use with impacts on the immune system, and the HIV reservoir.
The SWG is led by Dr. Pamina Gorbach, Dr. Gigi Simmons and Dr. Steven Shoptaw. The Aims of this Scientific Working Group are:
- Identify innovative methods for assessment of SU that can be used to generate comprehensive datasets for studies of how stimulants, opioids, and cannabinoids affect the HIV reservoir and immune reconstitution.
- Assess community acceptability of methods of assessment of SU most relevant to research on HIV Prevention, Treatment, and ART-Free Remission.
- Identify and facilitate methods to share results of laboratory and clinical assessments of SU back to community research participants.
SWG Leadership and Key Staff
Key SWG Activities
The primary activities for the TRSU SWG are:
- Seminars for basic/clinical scientists and research participants from communities at highest risk of HIV and substance abuse in LA to facilitate the identification of substance use assessment tools
- Conduct focus group discussions with community-based providers and members to obtain input on novel methods to assess SU including EMAs, hair and other self-report and biological measures of substance use in the setting of HIV/at risk for HIV.
- Identify resources for mass spectroscopy equipment, test strips; identify sites and community groups to support research using these novel approaches in communities.
- Develop a community engagement social media strategic plan on the topic of HIV and substance use.