Nationally, rates of HIV among African American men who have sex with women (MSW) in both rural and urban areas are nearly 10 times as high as those reported for Caucasian MSW and have increased annually since 2004. This increase is particularly evident in small towns and rural communities in the South. The years following high school are a critical period when rural African American MSW are particularly vulnerable to engaging in behaviors that increase their risk for HIV and other STIs. Few attend college and, in the rural South, job opportunities that lead to stable occupations are scarce. With no stake in conventional educational or occupational systems, the transition to the workforce can be demoralizing and protracted. Some who see no pathway to adequate subsistence or attainment of personal goals may experience increases in anger and other negative emotions that encourage substance use;undermine stable, monogamous relationships;and compromise protective sexual behavior. Based on the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) prescription for prevention science, the development of effective prevention programs requires etiological models that link contextual factors with proximal risk and protective mechanisms that forecast HIV-related risk behavior in a specified target population. Currently, this information does not exist for African American MSW in general or rural MSW in particular. Although program developers may create or adapt programs for rural African American MSW without the necessary scientific data, implementing programs that are not based on sound etiological models will undermine their public health impact. Consistent with IOM recommendations, the proposed research will provide the necessary next step for the development of efficacious HIV prevention interventions for rural African American MSW during young adulthood. We propose to sample 500 rural African American men age 18-21 who live in a region of central Georgia typical of areas in the rural South with large proportions of African American residents. Men from this region will provide survey data 3 times at 12-month intervals. The conceptual model that guides the study incorporates the following processes: (a) contextual risk factors including economic opportunities and stressors, racial discrimination, and risk-promoting peer affiliations and norms;(b) proximal risk mechanisms including negative emotionality, risk-promoting masculine ideology, and sexual relationship dynamics;(c) protective factors including racial pride, self-regulatory competence, and risk-deterring relationships with parents and informal mentor figures, and (d) HIV-related behaviors including substance use, unprotected intercourse, and multiple and concurrent sexual partnerships.

Public Health Relevance

Understanding the personal and environmental factors that contribute to rural African American men's HIV- related risk behavior is critical for prevention efforts to deter HIV. In this study we will recruit a sample of young African American men living in resource poor rural communities. Information from this research will assist in the development of scientifically based programs for this population.

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National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
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Behavioral and Social Science Approaches to Preventing HIV/AIDS Study Section (BSPH)
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Lambert, Elizabeth
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University of Georgia
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Brown, Geoffrey L; Kogan, Steven M; Kim, Jihyoung (2018) From Fathers to Sons: The Intergenerational Transmission of Parenting Behavior among African American Young Men. Fam Process 57:165-180
Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan; Beach, Steven R H et al. (2018) Oxytocin receptor gene methylation and substance use problems among young African American men. Drug Alcohol Depend 192:309-315
Hicks, Megan R; Kogan, Steven M (2018) The Influence of Racial Discrimination on Smoking among Young Black Men: A Prospective Analysis. J Ethn Subst Abuse :1-16
Cho, Junhan; Kogan, Steven M (2017) Development and Validation of the Masculine Attributes Questionnaire. Am J Mens Health 11:941-951
Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan; Oshri, Assaf et al. (2017) The influence of substance use on depressive symptoms among young adult black men: The sensitizing effect of early adversity. Am J Addict 26:400-406
Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan; Brody, Gene H et al. (2017) Pathways linking marijuana use to substance use problems among emerging adults: A prospective analysis of young Black men. Addict Behav 72:86-92
Oshri, Assaf; Kogan, Steven; Liu, Sihong et al. (2017) Pathways Linking Adverse Childhood Experiences to Cigarette Smoking Among Young Black Men: a Prospective Analysis of the Role of Sleep Problems and Delayed Reward Discounting. Ann Behav Med 51:890-898
Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan; Barnum, Stacey et al. (2017) Pathways to HIV-Related Behavior Among Heterosexual, Rural Black Men: A Person-Centered Analysis. Arch Sex Behav 46:913-924
Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan; Barton, Allen W et al. (2017) The Influence of Community Disadvantage and Masculinity Ideology on Number of Sexual Partners: A Prospective Analysis of Young Adult, Rural Black Men. J Sex Res 54:795-801
Hicks, Megan R; Kogan, Steven M; Cho, Junhan et al. (2017) Condom Use in the Context of Main and Casual Partner Concurrency: Individual and Relationship Predictors in a Sample of Heterosexual African American Men. Am J Mens Health 11:585-591

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