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Trends in HIV incidence between 2013-2019 and association of baseline factors with subsequent incident HIV among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men attending sexual health clinics in England: A prospective cohort study.

Hanum, N; Cambiano, V; Sewell, J; Rodger, AJ; Nwokolo, N; Asboe, D; Gilson, R; ... AURAH2 Study Group; + view all (2021) Trends in HIV incidence between 2013-2019 and association of baseline factors with subsequent incident HIV among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men attending sexual health clinics in England: A prospective cohort study. PLoS Medicine , 18 (6) , Article e1003677. 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003677. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Prospective cohort studies of incident HIV and associated factors among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (GBMSM) in the United Kingdom are lacking. We report time trends in and factors associated with HIV incidence between 2013 and 2019 among a cohort of GBMSM: the AURAH2 prospective study. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Participants were recruited through 1 of 3 sexual health clinics in London and Brighton (July 2013 to April 2016) and self-completed a baseline paper questionnaire and subsequent 4-monthly and annual online questionnaires (March 2015 to March 2018), including information on sociodemographics, lifestyle, health and well-being, HIV status, sexual/HIV-related behaviours, and preexposure prophylaxis and postexposure prophylaxis (PrEP/PEP). Incident HIV was ascertained by linkage with national HIV surveillance data from Public Health England (PHE). We investigated the associations of HIV incidence with (1) baseline factors using mixed-effects Weibull proportional hazard models, unadjusted and adjusted for age, country of birth and ethnicity, sexuality, and education level; and (2) time-updated factors, using mixed-effects Poisson regression models. In total, 1,162 men (mean age 34 years, 82% white, 94% gay, 74% university-educated) were enrolled in the study. Thirty-three HIV seroconversions occurred over 4,618.9 person-years (PY) of follow-up: an overall HIV incidence rate (IR) of 0.71 (95% confidence interval (CI) 0.51 to 1.00) per 100 PY. Incidence declined from 1.47 (95% CI 0.48 to 4.57) per 100 PY in 2013/2014 to 0.25 (95% CI 0.08 to 0.78) per 100 PY in 2018/2019; average annual decline was 0.85-fold (p < 0.001). Baseline factors associated with HIV acquisition included the following: injection drug use (6/38 men who reported injection drug-acquired HIV; unadjusted conditional hazard ratio (HR) 27.96, 95% CI 6.99 to 111.85, p < 0.001), noninjection chemsex-related drug use (13/321; HR 6.45, 95% CI 1.84 to 22.64, p < 0.001), condomless anal sex (CLS) (26/741; HR 3.75, 95% CI 1.31 to 10·74, p = 0.014); higher number of CLS partners (HRs >10 partners [7/57]; 5 to 10 partners [5/60]; and 2 to 4 partners [11/293]: 14.04, 95% CI 4.11 to 47.98; 9.60, 95% CI 2.58 to 35.76; and 4.05, 95% CI 1.29 to 12.72, respectively, p < 0.001); CLS with HIV-positive partners (14/147; HR 6.45, 95% CI 3.15 to 13.22, p < 0.001), versatile CLS role (21/362; HR 6.35, 95% CI 2.18 to 18.51, p < 0.001), group sex (64/500; HR 8.81, 95% CI 3.07 to 25.24, p < 0.001), sex for drugs/money (4/55, HR 3.27, 95% CI 1.14 to 9.38, p = 0.027) (all in previous 3 months); previous 12-month report of a bacterial sexually transmitted infection (STI) diagnoses (21/440; HR 3.95, 95% CI 1.81 to 8.63, p < 0.001), and more than 10 new sexual partners (21/471, HRs 11 to 49, 50 to 99, and >100 new partners: 3.17, 95% CI 1.39 to 7.26; 4.40, 95% CI 1.35 to 14.29; and 4.84, 95% CI 1.05 to 22.4, respectively, p < 0.001). Results were broadly consistent for time-updated analysis (n = 622 men). The study's main limitation is that men may not be representative of the broader GBMSM population in England. CONCLUSIONS: We observed a substantial decline in HIV incidence from 2013 to 2019 among GBMSM attending sexual health clinics. Injection drug use, chemsex use, and measures of high-risk sexual behaviour were strongly associated with incident HIV. Progress towards zero new infections could be achieved if combination HIV prevention including Test and Treat strategies and routine commissioning of a PrEP programme continues across the UK and reaches all at-risk populations.

Type: Article
Title: Trends in HIV incidence between 2013-2019 and association of baseline factors with subsequent incident HIV among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men attending sexual health clinics in England: A prospective cohort study.
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003677
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1003677
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 Hanum et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute for Global Health > Infection and Population Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10130456
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