David Brennan


Dr. David J. Brennan is an Associate Professor in the Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work (University of Toronto), OHTN Research Chair in Gay and Bisexual Men’s Health and the Director of CRUISElab (www.cruiselab.ca), a social science research lab focused on gay and bisexual men’s health. Dr. Brennan’s research, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Ontario HIV Treatment Network, and the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (CanFAR), has examined the ways in which gay and bisexual men who are marginalized by gender identity, race, age and HIV status access health and social service information online to maximize health and wellness. He has examined the intersection of racism and body image among ethnoracialized gay men, aging and HIV, and resilience among two-spirit gay and bisexual men who are HIV-positive. Espousing community based research principles, he has worked with nearly 40 different community based and AIDS Service Organizations here in Ontario. David has consulted with UNAIDS on how web apps may be useful for gay men in lower income countries. David’s Cruising Counts study (funded by OHTN) was essential in developing new guidelines for online outreach to gay men in Ontario (see http://www.catie.ca/en/resources/cruising-counts-guide?utm_source=tce&utm_medium=email&utm_content=en&utm_campaign=022416).


Dr. Brennan’s current study, (#iCruise, funded by CANFAR) is examining how young gay men use apps and online spaces for sexual health and has recently also been funded by CIHR to extend the study to gay men throughout the life cycle. Prior to moving to Toronto in 2007, David volunteered and worked in the HIV field since 1983. He served as the social work and bereavement coordinator for the first federally certified AIDS Hospice in the US and the Associate Director of Clinical Services at AIDS Action Committee in Boston. 

Selected Publications

E Hottes, T.S., Gesink, D., Ferlatte, O., Brennan, D.J., Rhodes, A.E., Marchand, R., Trussler, T. (2016). Concealment of sexual minority identities in interviewer-administered government surveys and its impact on estimates of suicide ideation among bisexual and gay men. Journal of Bisexuality, epub ahead of print. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15299716.2016.1225622

Emlet, C.A., Harris, L., Furlotte, C., Brennan, D.J., Pierpaoli, C. (2016). “I’m happy in my life now, I’m a positive person”: Approaches to successful aging in older adults living with HIV. Ageing and Society, epub ahead of print. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0144686X16000878

Shani, K., Khairandish, A., & Brennan, D.J. (2016). Health equity implications of excluding boys and vulnerable young men from Ontario’s HPV Immunization Program. University of Toronto Medical Journal, 93(3), 35-38.

Hottes T.S., Bogaert L., Rhodes A.E., Brennan D.J., & Gesink D. (2016). Re-assessing the burden of suicide-related behavior among sexual minority adults by study sample type: a systematic review and meta-analysis. American Journal of Public Health, 106(5), e1-e2. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2016.303088

Brennan, D.J., Lachowsky, N.J., Georgievski, G., Rosser, B.R.S., MacLachlan, D., Murray, J., & Cruising Counts Team. (2015). Experience and impact of online outreach services among men who use the Internet to seek sex with other men (MISM) in Ontario, Canada. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 17(12), e277. doi:10.2196/jmir.450

Woodford, M.R., Chonody, J.M., Kulick, A., Renn, K., & Brennan, D.J. (2015). The LGBQ Microaggressions on Campus Scale: A scale development and validation study. Journal of Homosexuality, epub ahead of print. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00918369.2015.1078205

Brennan, D. J., Souleymanov, R., George, C., Newman, P.A., Hart, T. A., Asakura, K., & Betancourt, G. (2015). Masculinity, Muscularity, and HIV Sexual Risk Among Gay and Bisexual Men of Color. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, epub ahead of print. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a0038725.

Emlet, C. A., Brennan, D. J., Brennenstuhl, S., Rueda, S., Hart, T. A., & Rourke, S. B. (2014). The impact of HIV-related stigma on older and younger adults living with HIV disease: does age matter? AIDS Care, 27(4), 520-528.

Travers, R., Munro, L., St. John, A., Klein, K., Hunter, H., Brennan, D.J., Brett, C., & Dobinson, C., (2013). A bed of roses?: The experiences of newcomer LGBT youth who migrate to Toronto. Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, 6(4), 137-150.

Brennan, D.J., Asakura, K., George, C., Newman, P.A., Giwa, S., Hart, T.A., Souleymanov, R., & Betancourt, G. (2013). “Never reflected anywhere:” Body image among ethnoracialized gay and bisexual men. Body Image: An International Journal of Research, 10(3), 389-398. doi: 10.1016/j.bodyim.2013.03.006

Bauer, G.R. & Brennan, D.J. (2013). The problem with ‘behavioral bisexuality’: Assessing sexual orientation in survey research. Journal of Bisexuality, 13(2), 148-165. doi: 10.1080/15299716.2013.782260

Brennan, D.J., Emlet, C., Brennenstuhl, S., & Rueda S. (2013). Socio-demographic profile of older adults with HIV/AIDS: Gender and sexual orientation differences. Canadian Journal on Aging, (32), 31-43. doi 10.1017/S0714980813000068

Brennan, D.J., Emlet, C.A., Eady, A. (2011). “HIV, Sexual Health, and Psychosocial Issues Among Older Adults Living with HIV in North America.” Ageing International. 36(3),     313-333.

Yager, C., Steele, L., Epstein, R., Brennan, D.J , & Ross, L. E.  (2010). “The challenges and mental health experiences of lesbian and bisexual women who are in the process of trying to conceive.” Health & Social Work , 35 (3), 191-200.

Brennan, D.J., Ross, L.E., Dobinson,C., Veldhuizen, S., & Steele, L., (2010). “Men’s Sexual Orientation and Health in Canada.” Canadian Journal of Public Health, 101 (3), 255-8.

Brennan, D. J., Welles, S. L., Miner, M. H., Ross M. W., Mayer. K. H., Rosser, B.R.S. (2010). “HIV treatment optimism and sexual risk among a national, diverse sample of HIV-positive gay and bisexual men.”  AIDS Education and Prevention, 22 (2):126-137.

Bih, Herng-Dar, Wang, Frank T. Y., Brennan, D. J. (2009). “Have they really come out? Gay men and their parents in Taiwan.” Culture, Health and Sexuality, 11(3), 285-296.

Brennan, D. J., Hellerstedt, W. L., Ross, M. W., Welles, S. L. (2007). “History of childhood sexual abuse and HIV risk behaviors in gay and bisexual men.”  American Journal of Public Health. 97(6), 1107-1112.