"CLaRO Pilot - DNA Methylation and Cardiovascular Risk in Latinos Living with HIV with and without Cocaine Use"

Our research has focused on the accelerated cardiovascular disease (CVD) pathophysiology observed in HIV spectrum disease.

Our preliminary data indicate that current cocaine use in Latino HIV+ men and women confers a disproportionately higher risk for CVD, indexed by the Framingham coronary event risk score. Using the stored specimens from the participants of our previous research, the proposed study is designed to extend our work by: a) determining the extent to which cocaine use in Latino HIV infected men and women is associated with aging, indexed by DNAm, and; b) examining the extent to which DNAm differentially predicts elevated subclinical cardiometabolic risk among study groups. Our initiative strives to contribute to the paucity of data on the intersection of HIV infection, substance use, and CVD health disparities among Latinos. Identifying early subclinical pathophysiological changes unique to Latino adults will inform potential avenues of intervention to address their elevated CVD risk burden.