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Modeling HIV: Determining the factors affecting the racial disparity in the prevalence of infected women

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  • We present a mathematical model of the transmission of HIV through sexual contact in a population stratified by sexual behavior and by race/ethnicity. We consider two theories for the disproportionate prevalence of HIV in the population of African American women and Hispanic/Latino women compared with U.S. women of other races/ethnicities. First, we consider that minority women are being adversely affected by incurable STDs due to the non-disclosure of risky homosexual activities of their male sex partners. Second, we consider the effect of sexual network factors, such as the racially homophilic networks through the use of a partnership mixing matrix. Both analytic and numerical results indicate that the effect of the down low population on the disproportionate spread of HIV in women is small compared to the effect of homophilic racial mixing.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 92D30.

    Citation:

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