TAJ Study


Principal Investigator

Jeffrey Samet, MD, MA, MPH

Key Personnel

Debbie Cheng, ScD, Biostatistician

Manojkumar Pardeshi, Co-Investigator & Indian PI

Shabana Patel, Co-Investigator & Indian Co-PI

Anita Raj, PhD, Co-Investigator

Niranjan Saggurti, Co-Investigator

Project Manager

Carly Bridden, MA, MPH

Data from this study are available from our URBAN ARCH Repository.


Sharon Coleman, Statistical Analyst

Grant Abstract

Although India currently has the largest number of people infected with HIV of any nation, to date, there have been no secondary HIV prevention programs with demonstrated effectiveness in this region of the world.  Lack of adequate behavioral risk data regarding HIV-infected adults in India impedes the development of such programs. Given evidence of the role of transactional sex in the Indian HIV epidemic and the role of alcohol in heightening sexual risk during transactional sex, research on alcohol, sexual risk, and transactional sex among HIV-infected people is clearly indicated. A US and Indian research team will collaborate with the HIV Positive People’s Network (HPPN), also known as INP+ (India-national level network), the largest organization in India serving those living with HIV, to achieve the following Specific Aims:

1)    To characterize alcohol consumption patterns of HIV-infected Indian adults reporting a history of  transactional sex involvement.

2)    To identify the association between alcohol consumption and risky sex practices within or outside the context of transactional sex.

3)    To describe the rationale and contexts for alcohol use by HIV-infected Indians with a history of transactional sex involvement, including its role in risky sex practices.

The study will be conducted among HIV-infected men who purchase sex and among HIV-infected women who sell sex recruited from Mumbai and Guntur, Indian districts experiencing major HIV epidemics linked to transactional sex (n=500).  Cross-sectional surveys will assess demographics, alcohol use, and risky sex practices.  A sub-sample of survey participants reporting past 30 day alcohol use will be recruited to participate in in-depth interviews regarding alcohol use by HIV-infected individuals within and outside the context of transactional sex (n=48).  The study findings will enable development of intervention research to address alcohol-related risky sex and, ultimately, reduce the transmission of HIV in India.


Silverman JG, Saggurti N, Cheng DM, Decker MR, Coleman SM, Bridden C, Pardeshi M, Dasgupta A, Samet JH, Raj A. Associations of Sex Trafficking History with Recent Sexual Risk among HIV-Infected FSWs in India. AIDS Behav. 2014;18(3):555-61.

Saggurti N, Raj A, Mahapatra B, Cheng DM, Coleman S, Bridden C, Battala M, Silverman JG, Pardesi MH, Samet JH. Prevalence and Correlates of Non-Disclosure of HIV Serostatus to Sex partners among HIV-Infected Female Sex Workers and HIV-infected Male Clients of Female Sex Workers in India. AIDS and Behavior. 2013;17(1):399-406. PMCID: PMC3634359

Raj A, Saggurti N, Cheng DM, Dasgupta A, Bridden C, Pradeshi M, Samet JH. Transactional sex risk and STI among HIV-infected female sex workers and HIV-infected male clients of FSWs in India. AIDS Care. 2011;23(11):1374-81. PMCID: PMC3638911

Silverman JG, Raj A, Cheng DM, Decker MR, Coleman S, Bridden C, Pardeshi M, Saggurti N, Samet JH. Sex trafficking and initiation-related violence, alcohol use and HIV risk among HIV+ female sex workers in Mumbai, India.  Journal of Infectious Diseases 2011;204 Suppl 5:S1229-34. PMCID:  PMC3247788

Samet JH, Pace CA, Cheng DM, Coleman S, Bridden C, Pardesi M, Saggurti N, Raj A.  Alcohol use and sex risk behaviors among HIV-infected female sex workers (FSWs) and HIV-infected male clients of FSWs in India. AIDS and Behavior. 2010; 14:74-83. PMCID: PMC2953370