Research by Jessica Maria Atrio, MD, former clinical fellow, Keck School of Medicine of USC, demonstrated that a safe but less-frequently prescribed birth control “mini-pill” is effective for women taking human immunodefciency virus (HIV) medications. 

Worldwide, HIV is the number one cause of death among women 18 to 45, according to the World Health Organization. The majority of women who have HIV live in countries, for example in sub- Saharan Africa, where their access to medical care is limited and where women and girls comprise a majority of people with HIV. Because of their serious and complex health concerns, HIV-positive women must take particular care with the decision to have children.

Jessica Maria Atrio, MD

“I couldn’t have conducted the study without the support of the SC CTSI. It was a tremendous undertaking for me at that point. I had only done retrospective research up to then, so this would be my first foray as a principal investigator in research that was more rigorous and translational in nature. It required a degree of sophistication I simply had no ability to do on my own.”

Jessica Maria Atrio, MD – Former clinical fellow, Keck School of Medicine of USC; assistant professor of obstetrics & gynecology and women’s health, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

The SC CTSI provided several elements of support for Atrio, including the SC CTSI Clinical Trials Unit (CTU), regulatory support, consultations about study ethics and biostatistics, and advocacy for the research. Atrio, had never conducted a prospective study with human participants before.

NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.