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Letter from the Chair in Sexual Health

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Coleman-Chair-BP-7.jpgFirst of all, I have to say that I am grieving the loss of one our pioneering faculty members - Mary Briggs who you will read about in this newsletter. She was an amazing woman and I was fortunate enough to receive some training from here when I was an intern at PHS some 36 years ago!

I am writing this from Mexico where I have started a 6-month sabbatical. The purpose of this sabbatical is to study gender variance which is widespread throughout the world but cultures place different values upon gender identities and cross-gender behavior. In most parts of the world, gender variant identifies and behavioral expressions of those identities are highly stigmatized - although the struggle for acceptance is growing around the world. However, there are cultures where variations in gender identities are much more tolerated, embedded into the normative and historical societal structure of gender, and sometimes a revered phenomenon.

I have started my work here in Mexico in a small indigenous community in Juchitan, Oaxaca. Fifteen years ago, I began my work on this subject, and I have been back to Juchitan many times. From here I will be going to French Polynesia, Thailand, and Burma. These societies (or parts thereof) have a unique and less stigmatized view of gender variance and cross-gender behavior. I will also be visiting Micronesia (Marshall Islands) and Melanesia (Fiji) which have interesting phenomenon but not as positive a situation - but are useful as contrast. I have been studying these societies for many years in my spare time, and I am back to revisit and finalize my observations and conclusions. I am accompanied by Mariette Pathy Allen who will be accenting the data with a photographic study.

I am just concluding my field research with the muxes of Juchitan. Juchitan is a small indigenous community (Zapotec) in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico. I have been able to observe the changes and evolution of the culture and the individual lives of many of the muxes. In Juchitan, muxes are a broad spectrum of gender non-conforming males - which would span our western constructs of gay, cross-dresser, transgender, and transsexual. The vast majority of them have sex with other men - and they are mostly distinctively sexually attracted to 'straight men' or 'bisexual men' known as mayates. Some muxes are heterosexually married and have children - their status as muxe is well recognized by the wife and society. A muxe is identified as such from an early age - and because of the relatively small community is known by everyone as muxe. Most parents in Juchitan would simply understand this as a fate of nature as the Zapotec people are fairly agnostic.

While it is not something that is necessarily desired and many fathers have negative reactions to their son's cross-gender behavior, most muxes become recognized as an asset to the family. Muxes take on a social role of caretakers of the parents and family members (they do this from a very young age). They are traditionally bound to live with the family and living in long-term relationship with another person is not really acceptable (except it seems for the ones who marry a woman and raise their own family). There have been some recent stories of two muxes living together - which is a very new and rare phenomenon.

The muxes are a very interesting phenomenon - and one which you cannot find even in other parts of the state of Oaxaca - never mind Mexico. They have long held a unique status within society, recognized and respected because of their role within the family, and they often inherit family fortune. I would say that they gain acceptance through hard work and good deeds - but at least that option is afforded them. As such, many hold positions of respect and power. The muxes organized themselves as a "gay rights organization in the 1970s - becoming Mexico's earliest gay rights organization. They now wield considerable political power.

It is hard to generalize about muxes - as this is a phenomenon quite complex and dynamically changing. There has been a blending of modern constructs of "gay" and "trans." They defy fitting into either construct and may best be understood in the western constructs of "queer."

The situation in Juchitan is extremely unique and exists as a stark contrast to other indigenous communities or other rural areas in Mexico. Muxes defy simple definition as it is a unique gender role within society which is expressed in a variety of ways - which are, to varying degrees, accepted. Many hold on to the traditional cultural belief that there is a place for sexual and gender diversity in a community.

It is an illustration of a community where sexual and gender diversity can coexist and that diversity can be celebrated. It is not paradise as our binary way of thinking of gender and sexual orientation continues to cause pressure to conform or create prejudice for those that don't fit the binary. And the struggle to maintain the traditions and create even more acceptance continues. But, it is an interesting challenge to other societies to think about how everyone can contribute to society capitalizing on their uniqueness and differentness. And, all can be enriched by those who do not conform to gender expectations. I do believe that celebration of sexual and gender diversity is essential to everyone's sexual health.


Faculty Profile: Jamie Feldman, MD, PhD

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Jamie-Feldman-BP.jpgAssociate professor Jamie Feldman, MD, PhD, is a family physician passionate about sexual medicine research, education, and clinical care.

While Feldman was working on her medical degree at University of Illinois, Urbana, she also completed a PhD in anthropology. In 1996, after a family medicine residency at Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, IL, she joined the faculty at the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Minnesota. Initially she worked as a family physician and trained residents in HIV/AIDS clinical care. In 1998, when the HIV/AIDS residency training program was eliminated, Feldman joined the faculty at the Program in Human Sexuality, replacing retiring physician Leon Nesvacil, MD. Feldman's interest in research, HIV, sexuality, and culture has made her a great fit for PHS. "Family physicians are uniquely qualified to address sexual health. They are trained in the whole person, across all ages and genders," said PHS director Eli Coleman, PhD,

Feldman's early research was in the area of HIV/AIDS.1 When she started at PHS she realized the lack of transgender-specific research and level-1 evidence. Since then, Feldman has been involved in studies focused on transgender health from HIV/AIDS prevention to the effects of hormone therapy. She has given numerous international presentations and published many scientific articles, book chapters, and guidelines based on her research in the areas of sexual functioning and transgender health. In addition to her recent publications2, Feldman is currently working on updating guidelines for The Fenway Institute for physicians on primary care of transgender patients and guidelines for physicians in British Columbia on the physical aspects of transgender endocrine therapy. Since 2001, Feldman has served as the chair for the World Professional Association for Transgender Health's Transgender Medicine and Research Committee. As she looks to the future, she is hopeful that the National Institutes of Health and other grant funding organizations will respond to the Institutes of Medicine report, The Health of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People (2011), by funding research in transgender health beyond the rubric of HIV.

Feldman is currently working with colleagues at PHS to build a framework for clinical research in the area of transgender health care. Feldman's current research includes looking at feminizing hormone therapy in patients over age 50; a retrospective, multicenter study on the long-term health of transgender individuals receiving hormone-therapy; and a study of immunological factors and the risk of Vulvodynia (based in U of M Epidemiology).

Feldman is involved in every aspect of education at PHS. She believes that, "Caring for a patient's whole health means that family physicians should be comfortable with sexuality." On most clinical days she is shadowed by medical students or residents from family medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, or other medical schools. She is the director of the sexual medicine course required for family medicine residents. Along with her colleagues, she is an instructor for the human sexuality course for first-year medical students and gives didactics for PHS postdoctoral fellows.

At the PHS clinic, the Center for Sexual Health, Feldman sees patients for all aspects of sexual medicine including sexual functioning concerns, women's sexual health, and transgender-specific care. In addition to her time at PHS, she see patients for two half days at the Women's Health Specialists Clinic at University of Minnesota Medical Center, Fairview.

A native of Chicago, Feldman lives in Saint Paul with her husband, sci-fi /fantasy writer Doug Hulick, and their two sons. Her hobby is historical rapier combat.

1. Feldman, J.L. (1995). Plague doctors: Responding to the AIDS Epidemic in France and America. Westport, Connecticut, Bergin and Garvey.

2. Recent publications

Feldman, J., & Spencer, K. (2013). Gender dysphoria in a 39-year-old man. Canadian Medical Association Journal. Published online ahead of print, October 7, 2013. doi:10.1503/cmaj.130450

Eckman, P.M., Dhungel, V., Mandras, S., Brisco, M.A., Emani, S., Duval, S., Lindenfeld, J., Sulemanjee, N., Sokos, G.G., Feldman, J. (2013). Sexual Function After Left Ventricular Assist Device. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 61(19), 2021-2022. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2013.02.022

Deutsch, M., Feldman, J. (2013). Updated recommendations from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health Standards of Care. Editorial in American Family Physician, 87(2):89-93.

Coleman, E., Bockting, W., Botzer, M., Cohen-Kettenis, P., DeCuypere, G., Feldman, J., Fraser, L., Green, J., Knudson, G., Meyer, W., Monstrey, S., & the WPATH Standards of Care Revision Committee. (2012). Standards of Care for the Health of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming People, 7th Version. International Journal of Transgenderism. 13(4), 165-232.

Feldman, J.L., Safer, J. (2009) Hormone therapy in adults: suggested revisions to the sixth version of the Standards of Care. International Journal of Transgenderism (11)3:146-182
Eyler, A.E. and Feldman, J.L. (2008). "Primary Care of the Transsexual Male." In Clinical Men's Health: Evidence in Practice. Heidelbaugh, J. (ed.) Atlanta, GA: Elsevier

Feldman, J.L. (2008). "Medical management of transgender patients." In The Fenway Guide to Enhancing Healthcare in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Communities, Makadon, H., Mayer, K., Potter, J., Goldhammer, H. (eds.), Philadelphia, PA, American College of Physicians.

Feldman, J.L. (2007). "Preventive Care of the Transgendered Patient: An Evidence Based Approach." In Principles of Transgendered Medicine and Surgery. Ettner, R., Eyler, A.E., Monstrey, S. (eds.) Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.

Ross, M.W., Rosser, B.R., McCurdy, S., Feldman, J.L. (2007) The advantages and limitations of seeking sex online: A comparison of reasons given for online and offline sexual liaisons by Men who have Sex with Men. Journal of Sex Research. 44(1):59-71

Feldman, J.L., Goldberg, J. (2006). Transgender Primary Medical Care: Suggested Guidelines for Clinicians in British Columbia. Vancouver, British Columbia: Vancouver Coastal Health, Transcend Transgender Support & Education Society, and the Canadian Rainbow Health Coalition.



Iantaffi-&-Spencer-BP.jpgThe theme of the 2013 Minnesota Transgender Health Coalition's Trans Health and Wellness Conference was "A Bridge to Access: Providers and Community Together."

The conference held October 12 - 13, 2013, featured keynote speakers Jamison Green, PhD, president-elect for the World Professional Association for Transgender Health; Victoria Kolakowski, the first openly transgender person to be elected as a trial court judge in the United States; and Andrea Jenkins, writer and multimedia visual and performance artist.

Alex Iantaffi, PhD, presented two workshops "Addressing internalized and systemic transphobia when working therapeutically with trans* and gender non-conforming youth and their families," and with Lauren Beach, JD, he presented, "Exploring the intersections between bisexual and transgender identities and organizing."

Katie Spencer, PhD, joined Carrie Link, MD, from Smiley's Family Medicine Clinic at an exhibit table to share with conference attendees transgender-specific care options through the University of Minnesota clinics.



Alex-Iantaffi-BP.jpgAlex Iantaffi, PhD, was one of five speakers invited to present at an annual conference for the College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists (COSRT), held at Regent's College in London, UK, on November 2, 2013.

Iantaffi presented, "Mindfulness in Motion: Using a body-based, narrative approach to sex therapy," which was based on the findings of a pilot study he conducted with at PHS with Sara Mize, PhD1. The study's scope was to explore the feasibility and acceptability of a sensorimotor therapeutic intervention for women's sexual health groups, with a significant mindfulness component. Initial findings indicated that, compared with pre intervention scores, overall mindfulness scores significantly improved following the intervention. In line with prior studies, the qualitative results indicated that participants found mindfulness skills to be particularly useful and transferable to their daily lives. Iantaffi provided attendees with examples of how to apply these approaches to individual and group therapy.

The conference was connected to a two-volume special issue of the journal Sexual and Relationships Therapy2 focusing on mindfulness and sexuality.

COSRT is an organization based in London that focuses on training, research, education, and regulation to enable sexual and relationship therapists to provide the most effective therapeutic treatments to the public.

Mize, S., & Iantaffi, A. (2013). The Place of Mindfulness in a Sensorimotor Intervention to Improve Women's Sexual Health. Sexual and Relationship Therapy 1-2(3-76). doi: 10.1080/14681994.2013.770144

Sexual and Relationship Therapy, Special Issue: Mindfulness and Sexuality, Volume 28, Issues 1 - 2, 2013.



If you were not able to join us for the great lecture by Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH, you can now watch the video online or download the audio.

As part of the John Money Lecture series hosted by PHS, Herbenick presented "First Blush: Adolescent and Young Adult Sexual Experiences in America" at the University of Minnesota Medical School on September 13, 2013. Herbenick presented data from two nationally representative studies of sexual behavior in the United States - the 2009 and 2012 National Surveys of Sexual Health and Behavior, conducted by Herbenick and her colleagues at Indiana University. Together, the studies track the sexual experiences of about 10,000 Americans from ages 14 to 94.

Herbenick is co-director of the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University, the sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction, a widely read sex columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. She has authored more than 70 scientific publications on sexuality topics and is particularly focused on research related to sexual behavior in the US, female orgasm, and genital perceptions.



Iantaffi-&-Gonzalez-BP.jpgAlex Iantaffi, PhD, and Cesar Gonzalez, PhD, will conduct a needs assessment with the transgender community focused on testing rates, medication adherence, and knowledge and acceptability of pre-exposure prophylaxis with transgender populations.

The one-year project was funded by the Developmental Center for AIDS Research (DCFAR) in the Academic Health Centre at the University of Minnesota. Iantaffi is the principal investigator and Gonzalez will serve as the co-investigator. Of the five DCFAR studies funded at the University, this is the only one that features a community based participatory research approach. The study will be completed in September 2014.


The PHS faculty invite you to explore the latest in sexual health research on December 11, 2013, Alex Iantaffi, PhD, and Cynthia Benoit will present "It's not all about being Deaf: Deaf MSM and HIV testing barriers," and on January 8, 2014, Ira Reiss, PhD, will present "How to integrate values, power, and advocacy into sexual science." Join us from 12 - 1 PM at PHS, 1300 South 2nd Street, Room 142, Minneapolis, MN 55454. To reserve your seat or to request notice of future presentations, please email

Alex-Iantaffi-BP.jpgDecember 11, 2013
Alex Iantaffi, PhD
Assistant Professor

Cynthia-Benoit-BP.jpgCynthia Benoit
D-P@rk Project Coordinator

"It's not all about being Deaf: Deaf MSM and HIV testing barriers"

Deaf Men who have Sex with Men (DMSM) are a high-risk, underserved population experiencing chronic barriers to HIV testing and prevention. The principal challenge is that HIV research, testing, counseling, and services are provided in English, while DMSM communicate primarily through American Sign Language (ASL). Despite these disparities, no national assessment of HIV testing rates, behavior, prevention, and treatment needs has been conducted in the US. Data from Maryland, the only state to ask information about hearing status when screening for HIV, indicate that the prevalence of HIV in deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals is two to five times higher than for hearing people. Despite increased risk of HIV infection, Deaf people are systematically excluded from English-based HIV services available to the hearing population. This presentation will discuss findings from qualitative interviews carried out with DMSM, and key informants working with this population. These interviews are part of a current NIH-funded formative study focused on exploring how to use online technologies to address the chronic barriers experienced by DMSM.

Ira-Reiss-BP.jpgJanuary 8, 2014
Ira Reiss, PhD
Professor Emeritus
Department of Sociology, University of Minnesota
Preeminent scientist in the field of human sexuality

"How to integrate values, power, and advocacy into sexual science"

There is widespread acceptance by American sexual scientists of the need to be aware of our values and control their potential biasing effect. Despite this belief there is a lack of consensus among sexual scientists concerning whether we should advocate for or against sexual policy issues that come before Congress and impact our field. Also, sexual scientists have conflicting views on just how much they should publicly reveal about their personal values concerning a sexual problem issue. Above all, the containment of bias requires confronting the interface of values, power and advocacy with the work we do in sexual science. I spell out my Value Aware approach as a pathway for dealing with these complexities of our sexual science field. I illustrate the tenets in that approach by discussing the way the current debate on public school sex education in America has been handled by sexual scientists, politicians, and others and the way one recent research study compared straight and gay families.


Letter from the Chair in Sexual Health

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Coleman-Chair-BP-7.jpgIt is an end of an era. Virginia E. Johnson, pioneering sex researcher and sex therapist, died on July 24, 2013, in St. Louis, MO. At age 88, she was one of the last great pioneers in the field of sexology and sex therapy.

Johnson worked with William Masters, MD, for more than three decades. They were researchers, teachers, and clinicians, and they were not afraid to be in the public eye to inform the public on sexual health matters. Their collaboration revolutionized our field through studying the human sexual response and pioneering sex therapy approaches. They helped to establish modern sex therapy and trained a generation of therapists throughout the country and around the world. The impact of their pioneering work is felt today as some of the basic understandings of human sexuality and treatment of sexual problems are rooted in their work. Masters and Johnson became household names, bringing public awareness to the importance of sexual pleasure and functioning in intimate relationships. Their research findings debunked a number of myths and led to an increased understanding of how to give and receive sexual pleasure based upon sound scientific understanding.

VC410JohnsonVE01-BP.jpgMasters and Johnson along with Alfred Kinsey, Helen Singer Kaplan, Harold Lief, John Money, and other pioneers made major contributions to our understanding of human sexuality and helped to legitimize the field of sexology and sexual therapy. With their deaths and now with hers, it seems like an end of an era.

The work of Masters and Johnson helped to influence the development of the Program in Human Sexuality (PHS). Masters was on the original national advisory committee when PHS was founded. More than any investigator before them, Masters and Johnson studied human sexual behavior in the laboratory and collected direct physiological and observational data. This forged the way to studying sexuality objectively and scientifically using direct physiological measurement.

In the 1970s, PHS conducted similar ground breaking research under the guidance of Joseph Bohlen, MD, PhD, Margaret Olwen Sanderson, MD, and James Held, BChE (see list below). These researchers refined the findings of Masters and Johnson and develop new approaches for sexual arousal measurement. They also documented women's multiple orgasm pattern. This led to other psychophysiological research which continues. Today scientists are able to record and observe sexual arousal and response not only in the genitals but also in the brain.

Currently at PHS Michael Miner, PhD, is investigating the phenomenon of compulsive sexual behavior through measurement of sexual arousal following negative mood induction to understand the basic mechanisms that are at play.

While the work of Masters and Johnson has continued to influence the field, unfortunately the Masters and Johnson Institute (1964 - 1994) that they built died with them. That is true for many of the pioneers in our field.

At PHS we are trying to ensure that our legacy is preserved and that the work will carry on for generations to come. While we carry on a tradition of harmonizing research, teaching, clinical practice, and advocating for a sexually healthier society, we are working diligently to preserve our institution through development. Through our fundraising effort and the establishment of endowed chairs, research funds, and fellowships, we not only enhance our work, but ensure its future. While we honor Johnson and the other pioneers in our field, we must not be complacent or take for granted the institutions we create. It takes great effort and determination to establish these institutions, and an even greater resolve to ensure their life beyond our work. So as we honor an end to an era, we must recognize our accomplishments, and prepare for the future.

Bohlen, J. G., Held, J. P., & Sanderson, M. O. (1980). The male orgasm: Pelvic contractions measured by anal probe. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 9(6), 503-521. doi: 10.1007/BF01542155

Bohlen, J. G., Held, J. P., & Sanderson, M. O. (1983). Update on sexual physiology research. Marriage & Family Review, 6(3-4), 21-33. doi: 10.1300/J002v06n03_03

Bohlen, J. G., Held, J. P., & Sanderson, M. O., & Ahlgren, A. (1982). The female orgasm: Pelvic contractions. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 11(5), 367-386. doi: 10.1007/BF01541570

Bohlen, J. G., Held, J. P., Sanderson, M. O., & Boyer, C. M. (1982). Development of a woman's multiple orgasm pattern: A research case report. Journal of Sex Research, 18(2), 130-145. doi: 10.1080/00224498209551144

Bohlen, J.G., Held, J.P., Sanderson, M., & Patterson, R.P. (1984). Heart rate, rate-pressure product, and oxygen uptake during four sexual activities. Archives of Internal Medicine, 144(9), 1745-1748. doi: 10.1001/archinte.1984.00350210057007

Photo of Virginia Johnson courtesy of Bekcer Medical Library, Washington University School of Medicine


Faculty profile: Cesar Gonzalez, PhD

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Cesar-Gonzalez-13-BP.jpgCesar Gonzalez, PhD, is feeling inspired after an intensive two-week training on randomized clinical trials. The course will undoubtedly impact his research on the topics of gender dysphoria, severe mental illness, treatment engagement, and the application of integrative psychological treatments among vulnerable populations.
Cesar-Gonzalez-NIH-BP.jpgGonzalez was selected as a fellow for the National Institutes of Health's Thirteenth Annual Summer Institute on Randomized Behavioral Clinical Trials held in Warrentown, Virginia, July 14 - 26, 2013. The training focused on the planning, design, and execution of randomized clinical trials involving behavioral interventions. "The faculty and fellows at the Summer Institute made the experience so unique and memorable. Conducting randomized clinical trials on behavioral interventions allows us to advance practice and theory. My hope is to build on interventions that work to increase the well-being of disadvantaged and marginalized populations, such as transgender individuals."

Cesar Gonzalez, PhD, is a psychologist, researcher, and educator at the Program in Human Sexuality. Gonzalez completed his postdoctoral fellowship at PHS in 2010, and joined PHS as a clinical psychologist and researcher on the All Gender Health Online research project where he helped develop an interactive web-based intervention for sexual health. Since then he has been promoted to Research Associate and in 2012 to Assistant Professor (research-track).

In recent years Gonzalez has been recruited for several international consultations including assisting in the development and translation of the Spanish Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP) for the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards. He currently serves as a representative of the National Latina/o Psychological Association for the American Psychological Association's International Network on LGBTQ Issues in Psychology. In the past Gonzalez has served as a consultant to the Pan American Health Organization on promoting comprehensive healthcare to gay men and men who have sex with men in Latin American and the Caribbean.

Gonzalez is board certified in clinical psychology by the American Board of Professional Psychology. He is currently receiving his Advanced Certification in Schema Therapy (by the International Society of Schema Therapy through the Cognitive Therapy Center of NY/NJ), an innovative and evidence-based approach for treating complex psychological conditions and personality disorders. Gonzalez received his BA in psychology from the University of Arizona and received his PhD in clinical psychology from Alliant International University, Los Angeles. His clinical training includes behavioral medicine, severe mental illness, child and family therapy, and the assessment of learning differences. He served as director of evaluation and research at Bienestar Human Services, Inc., a non-profit organization serving Latino, HIV-infected/affected, GLBT individuals, where he evaluated HIV prevention programs and conducted community research on HIV/AIDS. He continues his passion for non-profit work by serving on the board of directors of Family Tree Clinic in St. Paul, MN. Gonzalez is an editorial board member of the International Journal of Transgenderism and is a fellow of the American Academy of Clinical Psychology. He is recipient of National Institute of Health's Loan Repayment Program award. Gonzalez is bicultural, and is bilingual in English and Spanish.

Recent publications by Gonzalez include:

Gonzalez, C. A., Bockting, W.O., Beckman, L., & DurĂ¡n, R. E. (2012). Agentic and communal personality traits: Their associations with depression and resilience among transgender women. Sex Roles: A Journal of Research, 67(9), 528-543. doi: 10.1007/s11199-012-0202-y

Willoughby, B.L.B., Hill, D.B., Gonzalez, C.A., Lacorazza, A., Macapagal, R.A., Barton, M.E., & Doty, N.D. (2011). Who Hates Gender Outlaws? A Multisite and Multinational Evaluation of the Genderism and Transphobia Scale. International Journal of Transgenderism, 12(4), 254-271. doi: :10.1080/15532739.2010.550821

Photo: National Institutes of Health's Summer Institute on Randomized Behavioral Clinical Trials



Coleman-India-crop2.jpgEli Coleman, PhD, joined a consultation meeting on stigma reduction, health care provider awareness, and knowledge enhancement on transgender issues in India. The Indo-US collaboration took place in Mumbai in June and was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Indian Council of Medical Research.

This consultation brought members of the hijras community together with physician and other health care workers to design a workshop to sensitize health care workers to the unique circumstances that the hijras community faces in encountering the health care system. The goal of this grant is develop a training program that will reduce stigma and discrimination in the health care setting for members of the hijras community and foster better health outcomes.

Swagata Banik, PhD, director of Public Health Program at Baldwin Wallace University, is the principal investigator on this grant and Coleman is a co-investigator.

Photo: Swagata Banik, PhD, and Eli Coleman, PhD



Debby-Herbenick-BP.jpgWhat do young women and men do as part of their sexual experiences? How many are abstinent? How many engage in sex - and what types of sex? And, importantly, to what extent do they experience sexual pleasure as well as sexual difficulties in connection with their sexual experiences?

Join us for "First Blush: Adolescent and Young Adult Sexual Experiences in America," by Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH. Herbenick will present data from two nationally representative studies of sexual behavior in the United States - the 2009 and 2012 National Surveys of Sexual Health and Behavior, conducted by Herbenick and her colleagues at Indiana University. Together, the studies track the sexual experiences of about 10,000 Americans from ages 14 to 94.

Herbenick is co-director of the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University, the sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender and Reproduction, a widely read sex columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. She has authored more than 70 scientific publications on sexuality topics and is particularly focused on research related to sexual behavior in the US, female orgasm, and genital perceptions.

"First Blush: Adolescent and Young Adult Sexual Experiences in America"
Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH

Friday, September 13, 2013
12:10 - 1 PM, doors open at 12 PM
Moos Tower 2-620

Free and open to the public
Lunch will be provided while supplies last

Please reserve your seat at

The John Money Lecture in Pediatric Sexology is hosted by the Program in Human Sexuality, Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, and the University of Minnesota Medical School.

Photo: Courtesy of Indiana University


Alex Iantaffi, PhD, joins faculty

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Alex-Iantaffi-2-BP.jpgResearcher, clinician, and educator Alex Iantaffi, PhD, joined the faculty at PHS on January 2, 2013.

Iantaffi is an assistant professor and a licensed marriage and family therapist, who originally trained in the United Kingdom as a systemic psychotherapist. Iantaffi has most recently worked on HIV research in the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Minnesota. In 2008 he came to the US from the UK to work on his postdoctoral fellowship at PHS, while serving as the project coordinator for the research project All Gender Health Online.

"We welcome Alex back to PHS. He is a great addition to our faculty, strengthening our research program and helping with clinical and teaching activities as well," said Eli Coleman, PhD, director.

Iantaffi is currently principal investigator for a study, funded by the National Institutes of Health, on Deaf Men who have Sex with Men (DMSM), HIV testing, prevention, and technology titled "D-P@RK." This study aims to overcome health disparities to HIV testing for DMSM through the development of Internet-based screening and prevention tools. The long-term objective of this line of research is to improve HIV screening, prevention, treatment, and access for Deaf people, by developing innovative, culturally and linguistically accessible Internet-based methods and interventions. The project has begun recruiting DMSM and individuals who have experience working with DMSM around issues of sexual health and/or HIV prevention, testing, and treatment.

Iantaffi has been the Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Sexual and Relationship Therapy since June 2007, receiving its first impact factor in 2011. His therapeutic work is currently focused on transgender and gender non-conforming youth, and their families; sexuality, and relationships. Iantaffi has conducted research, and published on gender, disability, sexuality, deafness, education, sexual health, HIV prevention, and transgender issues. His scholarly work has been increasingly focused on issues of intersectionality and sexual health disparities. Iantaffi serves on the Transgender Commission leadership team as a past co-chair, as well as vice-chair on the Board of Directors at PFund, host for the GLBT Host Home Program, and core organizer for the newly formed Minnesota LGBTQ Health Collaborative.


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