Conjoint Analysis (CJA), a statistical market-based technique that assesses the value consumers place on product characteristics, may be used to predict acceptability of hypothetical products. Rectal Microbicides (RM)-substances that would prevent HIV infection during receptive anal intercourse-will require acceptability data from potential users in multiple settings to inform the development process by providing valuable information on desirable product characteristics and issues surrounding potential barriers to product use. This study applied CJA to explore the acceptability of eight different hypothetical RM among 128 MSM in Lima and Iquitos, Peru; Guayaquil, Ecuador; and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Overall RM acceptability was highest in Guayaquil and lowest in Rio. Product effectiveness had the greatest impact on acceptability in all four cities, but the impact of other product characteristics varied by city. This study demonstrates that MSM from the same region but from different cities place different values on RM characteristics that could impact uptake of an actual RM. Understanding specific consumer preferences is crucial during RM product development, clinical trials and eventual product dissemination.
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