AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 20, Supplement 1, pp 197–214 | Cite as

Optimization of Multicomponent Behavioral and Biobehavioral Interventions for the Prevention and Treatment of HIV/AIDS

  • Linda M. CollinsEmail author
  • Kari C. Kugler
  • Marya Viorst Gwadz
Original Paper


To move society toward an AIDS-free generation, behavioral interventions for prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS must be not only effective, but also cost-effective, efficient, and readily scalable. The purpose of this article is to introduce to the HIV/AIDS research community the multiphase optimization strategy (MOST), a new methodological framework inspired by engineering principles and designed to develop behavioral interventions that have these important characteristics. Many behavioral interventions comprise multiple components. In MOST, randomized experimentation is conducted to assess the individual performance of each intervention component, and whether its presence/absence/setting has an impact on the performance of other components. This information is used to engineer an intervention that meets a specific optimization criterion, defined a priori in terms of effectiveness, cost, cost-effectiveness, and/or scalability. MOST will enable intervention science to develop a coherent knowledge base about what works and does not work. Ultimately this will improve behavioral interventions systematically and incrementally.


Behavioral intervention Biobehavioral intervention Multiphase optimization strategy Factorial design Fractional factorial design 



The word described herein was supported by Grant R03 HD079711 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Institute for Child Health and Human Development; grants P50 DA010075, R01 DA032083, and P30 DA011041 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse; grant R01 DK097364 from the National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases; and grant P01 CA180945 from the National Cancer Institute. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health or the institutes mentioned above.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda M. Collins
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kari C. Kugler
    • 2
  • Marya Viorst Gwadz
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Human Development and Family Studies and The Methodology CenterThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA
  2. 2.The Methodology CenterThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA
  3. 3.Center for Drug Use and HIV Research (CDUHR), College of NursingNew York UniversityNew YorkUSA

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