Very High HIV Incidence and Associated Risk Factors in a Longitudinal Cohort Study of Diverse Adolescent and Young Adult Men Who Have Sex with Men and Transgender Women

  • Brian MustanskiEmail author
  • Daniel T. Ryan
  • Michael E. Newcomb
  • Richard T. D’Aquila
  • Margaret Matson
Original Paper


To report HIV incidence and associated factors among young men who have sex with men (YMSM) and transgender women (TW). Data were collected February 2015 to July 2018 in the RADAR longitudinal cohort study of YMSM/TW aged 16–29 years (N = 1093). Data included tests for HIV and rectal STIs and self-reported sexual behaviors and networks characteristics. HIV incidence rates were 2.91 per 100 person years (44 seroconversions among 1513 person years). Incidence was significantly higher in Black participants than white (IRR 8.81; 95% CI 2.72–45.26) and Latinx (IRR 3.15; 1.49–7.28) participants, but no significant differences by gender identity were found. Testing positive for rectal STIs (HR 2.50; 95% CI 1.27–4.92) and sex with a partner from a high HIV incidence community area (HR 2.46; 95% CI 1.19–5.07) were associated with higher incidence. HIV incidence was very high and Black YMSM/TW experienced higher HIV incidence attributable to partner race and geographic residence. Rectal STIs were associated with increased HIV incidence.


HIV incidence Gay and bisexual men Young MSM Transgender women Adolescent 



This study was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (U01DA036939). We acknowledge the support of the Third Coast Center for AIDS Research (P30AI117943) and the Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (UL1TR001422). We thank the participants in the RADAR study for sharing their experiences. We acknowledge the contributions of the RADAR study staff, particularly Antonia Clifford, Justin Franz, Roky Truong, Christian Castro, and Hannah Hudson.


This study was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (U01DA036939).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and WellbeingNorthwestern UniversityChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Department of Medical Social Sciences, Feinberg School of MedicineNorthwestern UniversityChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Feinberg School of MedicineNorthwestern UniversityChicagoUSA
  4. 4.Northwestern Institute for Sexual and Gender Minority Health and WellbeingChicagoUSA

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