Investigating HIV Comorbidities and Disparities in Women, Minorities and Immigrants

A Department of Medicine Research Spotlight

Professor of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases
Director, HIV Translational Research Program
Medical Director, Refugee Screening Clinic

Lori Fantry, MD, MPH, is the program director of HIV Translational Research for the UA Division of Infectious Diseases in the Department of Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine - Tucson. Her research includes sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among hospitalized patients; HIV in women; HIV and cancer; HIV and osteoporosis; HIV Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, HIV and cardiovascular disease; and latent tuberculosis among immigrants.

Currently, she is a co-investigator on the study entitled “Evaluating the Use of Pitavastatin to Reduce the Risk of Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) in HIV-Infected Adults (REPRIEVE).” Multiple studies have shown that HIV-infected individuals have a higher risk for cardiovascular disease than individuals with similar characteristics who do not have HIV. REPRIEVE is a multicenter study funded by NIAID in which HIV-infected individuals with low to moderate risk of cardiovascular disease (according to the most widely used CVD risk calculator, which does not take into account the added CVD risk associated with HIV) are randomized to receive statin therapy or placebo. The study evaluates the efficacy and safety of statin therapy for the prevention of cardiovascular disease in HIV-infected individuals.

1 in 2 gay men will be HIV-positive by age 50 graphicIn addition, she is the principal investigator of the study, “Knowledge, Attitudes, and Barriers about Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Among Individuals with Limited Access to Medical Care and from Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds.” HIV oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) has been shown to be safe, well-tolerated, and efficacious in preventing HIV infection. The latest HIV/Epidemiology Report estimates that Arizona was the 18th highest state in HIV incidence. Maricopa County and Pima County, located in southern Arizona along the Mexican border, bear the largest part of the HIV burden. Thirty-seven percent of the HIV infected individuals are Hispanic. This study is one of the first U.S. surveys to examine the knowledge, attitudes and barriers to PrEP in an at-risk population that is predominately Hispanic.

Finally, she is a co-investigator on “Promoting Adherence to Treatment for Latent TB Infection through Mobile Phone Text Messaging.” This is a randomized NIH trial to evaluate the effectiveness of text messaging to promote adherence to have therapy among immigrants. Refugees in Pima County are followed for the duration of therapy aimed at preventing TB and adherence with therapy is compared between individuals with text messaging and those without text messaging. 

Contact the Division of Infectious Diseases, (520) 626-6887, for information on any collaborative opportunities with her research.

Release Date: 
06/19/2017 - 10:00am