The National Institutes of Health has awarded a $2 million grant to University of Pennsylvania researchers to study innovative ways to prevent chronic diseases among African-American men who have HIV. The high chronic disease risk for these men has long been known, but suitable evidence-based interventions are lacking, said study leader John B. Jemmott, PhD, a professor of communication in psychiatry at the university's Perelman School of Medicine and the Kenneth B. Clark professor of communication at the Annenberg School for Communication.
"African-American men who are infected with HIV are living longer than ever before and are now being impacted by the same chronic diseases that affect the general population of African-American men over 40," Jemmott said in a statement.
"We know that in addition to standard age-related factors, many of these chronic illnesses have behavioral components -- risk is influenced by what people do and don't do, their diet, and the amount of physical activity they get," Jemmott said. "Based on this complex intersection, we need to identify novel strategies to help these men navigate their lives in the healthiest way possible."
The chronic diseases for which these men are at risk include cardiovascular disease, cancer, and diabetes, Jemmott said.