Sherry Larkins, Ph.D.

ISAP Researchers' Profiles

Sherry Larkins, Ph.D.

Sherry Larkins, Ph.D., has worked for Friends Research Institute and UCLA’s Integrated Substance Abuse Programs since 1998. She currently directs ISAP’s International Training and Education efforts, including 2 SAMHSA-funded projects in Southeast Asia. She also leads the training and education efforts of ISAP’s visiting scholars. Prior to her current position, she directed training and technical assistance initiates for the Los Angeles County, Department of Mental Health. She’s led multiple epidemiological and clinical research studies, including ones investigating the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections among substance users, and others that focus on treatment interventions. She has been involved in substance abuse research for over 20 years and completed her doctorate in medical sociology at Rutgers University in 1999. Her research interests include stimulant abuse, substance abuse treatment for marginalized populations, sexual risk behaviors associated with substance use, and qualitative methodologies.

Education and Training

  • California State University, Chico, B.A., 1991, Sociology/Psychology
  • Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, M.A., 1996, Sociology
  • Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, Ph.D., 1999, Sociology


  • Stimulant Abuse
  • Treatment for Marginalized Populations
  • HIV and Sexual Risk Behaviors Associated with Substance Use
  • Mental Health and Co-Occurring Disorders
  • Qualitative Methodologies

Contact Info

UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs
11075 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 100
Los Angeles, CA 90025

Selected Publications

  1. Varady, D., C. Walker, K. McClure, J. Smith-Heimer, and S. Larkins. 1999. Helping Families Move: Counseling for Housing-Voucher Recipients. Netherlands Journal of Housing and the Built Environment, 14, no. 1, 33-59.
  2. Reback, C.J., Larkins, S., & Shoptaw, S. 2003 “Methamphetamine abuse as a barrier to HIV medication adherence among gay and bisexual men.” AIDS Care, 15 (6), 775-785.
  3. Reback, C.J., Larkins, S., & Shoptaw, S. 2004 Perceptions of sexual risk among gay  and bisexual   male methamphetamine abusers before and after drug treatment. AIDS and Behavior, 8 (1), 87-98.
  4. Shoptaw, S., Reback, C.J., Peck, J.A., Yang, X., Rotheram-Fuller, E., Larkins, S., Veniegas, R.C., Hucks-Ortiz, C. 2005. Promising behavioral treatment approaches to reduce drug use and HIV-related sexual risk behaviors among methamphetamine-dependent gay and bisexual men. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 78 (2), 125-134.
  5. Larkins, S., Reback, C.J., Shoptaw, S., and Veniegas, R. 2005. Methamphetamine-dependent gay men’s disclosure of their HIV status to sexual partners. AIDS Care, 17 (4), 521-532.
  6. Larkins, S., Reback, C.J., & Shoptaw, S. 2005. Methamphetamine in the Gay Male Community. Connections. Fall, 2-4.
  7. Larkins, S., Reback, C.J., & Shoptaw, S. 2006. HIV risk behaviors among gay male methamphetamine users before and after treatment. Journal of Gay and Lesbian Psychotherapy, 10 (3/4), 122-126.
  8. King, W. Larkins, S., Hucks-Ortiz, C., Reback, C.J., & Shoptaw, S. 2007. HIV risk behaviors among gay male Wang, J., Gorbach, P., Veniegas, R., and Shoptaw, S. Factors Associated with HIV Viral Load in a Respondent Driven Sample in Los Angeles. AIDS and Behavior, December, 13 (1), 145-153.
  9. Shoptaw, S., Reback, C., Larkins, S., Wang, J., Rotheram-Fuller, E., Dang, J, &Yang, X. 2008. Outcomes Using Two Tailored Behavioral Treatments for Substance Abuse In Urban Gay and Bisexual Men. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 35(3): 285-293.
  10. Shoptaw, S., Weiss, R., Munjas, B., Hucks-Ortiz, C., Larkins, S., Victorianne, G., Gorbach. P. 2009. Homonegativity, substance use, sexual risk behaviors and HIV-status in poor and ethnic men who have sex with men in Los Angeles. Journal of Urban Health, 86, 77-92.
  11. Reback, C.J. & Larkins, S. 2010. Maintaining a heterosexual identity: Sexual  meanings among a sample of heterosexually-identified Men who have Sex with Men. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 39(3), 766-73.
  12. Reback, C.J. & Larkins, S. 2013. HIV Risk Behaviors among a Sample of  Heterosexually Identified Men who have Sex with Men and/or Preoperative Transgender Women. Journal of Sex Research, 50 (2), 151-163.
  13. Padwa, H., Larkins, S., Crevecoeur-McPhail, D., & Grella, C. Dual-Diagnosis capability of mental health and substance use disorder treatment programs in Southern California. 2013. Journal of Dual Diagnosis, 9 (2), 179-186.
  14. Reback, C.J., Kaplan, R.L., & Larkins, S. 2015. Disclosure of male sexual partnering and HIV serostatus among a sample of heterosexually identified men who have sex with men. AIDS Education & Prevention, 27 (3). June.
  15. Reback, C.J., Kaplan, R., Belcher, T., Larkins, S. 2016. The Role of Illusion in the Construction of Erotic Desire: Narratives from Heterosexual Men Who Have Occasional Sex with Transgender Women. Culture, Health & Sexuality. 

Last updated - 05/11/2016

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