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Director's Report to the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse
May, 1995


Media and Education Activities


NIDA is the lead agency in the development of the Secretary's Marijuana Initiative, to be launched in the late summer/early fall. We are producing:

  • A National Conference on Marijuana

  • Two companion booklets for parents and children on Facts About Marijuana

  • A video for parents on the science-based facts about marijuana, how it fits into their children's lives, and what parents can do

  • Television PSAs developed by the Partnership for a Drug Free America

  • NIDA and the Advertising Council are now producing the next phase of the Get High, Get Stupid, Get AIDS national media campaign. There will be new TV PSAs for young teens, produced by cutting edge animators The Brothers Quay. There will also be new PSAs for young adults, based on the characters in the current successful ads. In addition, award winning singer Melissa Etheridge will appear in a music video singing her hit song, "All American Girl," which will be visually combined with the PSA.


Liaison with National Organizations Update

  • DeafPride, Inc. is developing a 2-tape videotape package entitled, "A Second Chance." One tape is designed to inform deaf substance abusers of what they can expect when they enter an inpatient treatment program. The other tape is designed to help service providers understand the special needs of deaf substance abusers and enable them to provide linguistically and culturally appropriate treatment for their clients.

  • Minority Materials Development Meetings
    NIDA convened two meetings of substance abuse and communications experts in March to determine the substance abuse information needs and media preferences of Hispanics and African-Americans. A contract will be awarded this fiscal year to develop culturally appropriate information products based on the information gathered at these meetings.

  • DEPR's Community Research Branch, through NIDA's Office of Public Affairs, has contributed to the development of a videotape on "Drug Abuse and HIV: Reaching Those at Risk" (NIDA Videotape Series, April-May 1995; NCADI VHS 74; 17 minutes). The videotape is an extension of three HIV prevention field manuals published by the Community Research Branch in 1994.


Press Releases


NIDA has participated in the following Press Conferences/Briefings in recent months:

  • April 11, 1995 School-based Prevention Program Reduces Teens' Drug Use Through the End of High School NIDA issued an NIH News Release on publication of an article in JAMA by Dr. Gilbert Botvin, Institute for Prevention Research, Cornell University Medical College. The results of a long-term study showed that drug abuse prevention programs, when conducted with 7th-grade students and reinforced with subsequent booster sessions, can produce lower levels of tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana use by teenagers over a sustained period of time.

  • April 3, 1995 NIDA Seeks New Scientific Director NIDA issued a Media Advisory announcing the recruitment of a director for the Division of Intramural Research.


Press Conference


  • April 12, 1995 Public Education Campaign on Inhalant Abuse NIDA participated in a press conference sponsored by the Partnership for a Drug-Free America to announce a new public service campaign on inhalant abuse. NIDA Director, Dr. Alan Leshner spoke regarding the extent of inhalant use by teenagers and the harmful consequences of inhalant abuse.


Exhibits


NIDA has sponsored exhibits at the following conferences held recently:

  • AMSIE'95: The 1995 Annual Meeting and Scientific Innovation Exposition; February 16-21;Atlanta, GA.

  • National Asian Pacific American Families Against Substance Abuse (NAPAFASA); March 29 - April 1; Los Angeles, CA.

  • Annual Meeting of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM); April 2730;Chicago, IL

  • Prevention 2000: HIV, Violence, and Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Use . . . A Community Responsibility; May 5-9; Orlando, FL.

  • American Cities Against Drugs; May 14-16; Atlanta, GA.

  • Development of a new NIDA logo and a new portable NIDA exhibit are also in progress.


Planned Meetings


NIDA is sponsoring a conference on "AIDS and Drug Abuse" which will be held at the Princess Hotel in Scottsdale, Arizona on June 9-10, 1995, prior to the opening of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence, Inc. annual meeting. The purpose of the AIDS and drug abuse meeting is to bring together investigators from the biomedical and behavioral sciences to review the state of research on AIDS and drug abuse, to discuss future research priorities, and to foster scientific collaboration. Approximately 100 scientific presentations will be given over the 2 day conference.

NIDA is delighted to recognize the 60th anniversary of the opening of the Lexington, Kentucky facility which occurred on May 25, 1935 and played such a central role in the development of drug abuse research. This anniversary will be celebrated by a symposium and dinner on Sunday, June 11 at the CPDD meeting in Scottsdale, AZ.

Philippe Bourgois, Ph.D., of the Department of Anthropology at San Francisco State University, will be visiting NIDA on June 19 to discuss his field research among a network of homeless intravenous drug users in San Francisco.

On June 22, 1995, NIDA's Behavioral Science Working Group and the Treatment Working Group will sponsor a Roundtable Discussion on Drug Craving at the Gaithersburg Hilton. A small group of behavioral scientists, neuroscientists and treatment researchers will be discussing diverse approaches to studying drug craving and importantly, the experiential and phenomenologic underpinnings of craving in drug abusers.

In collaboration with Northern Arizona University and with the co-sponsorship of other PHS agencies and institutes, NIDA will hold its third science symposium: "Current Status and Future Prospects of HIV Prevention Research," on August 16-18 in Flagstaff, AZ. The theme of the symposium will be on the efficacy of HIV prevention: What works? For whom? Under what circumstances? At what cost? NIDA and other symposium co-sponsors will host plenary sessions that feature their HIV prevention research portfolios, and funded researchers will be invited to present findings from their HIV prevention research. The final plenary will address priorities for future HIV prevention research as viewed by the co-sponsoring PHS representatives. A number of journal editors will be invited to cover the symposium and to facilitate publication of papers in the refereed literature.

A research symposium entitled "Systematic Innovation in Drug Abuse Treatment" is scheduled for August 18-19, 1995, in San Diego, CA (co-located with the 37th International Congress on Alcohol and Drug Dependence).

NIDA has several plenaries and major sessions scheduled in the 37th International Congress on Alcohol and Drug Dependence, San Diego, California August 20-25, 1995.

NIDA will be one of the sponsors of a workshop on "Molecular Biology and Genetic Approaches to Sleep Control." The workshop, organized by the Trans-NIH Sleep Research Coordinating Committee, which includes a member of the NIDA professional staff, will be held on September 6-7, 1995 in Bethesda, Maryland.

DEPR's Community Research Branch, in collaboration with NIDA's Office on AIDS, will be holding a meeting in September on the current status and future directions of needle exchange research.

A satellite meeting on nicotine addiction is planned for November 11, 1995 at the annual Society for Neuroscience meeting in San Diego. The meeting is entitled "Advances in Drug Abuse Research on Nicotine".

NIDA's neuroscience representation is enhanced by broad planned participation of intramural scientists in the upcoming Society for Neuroscience meeting in San Diego, CA. A great many abstracts for this meeting have been submitted from the Intramural Research Program, with 14 from the Molecular Neurobiology Branch.

Dr. Larry Seitz of NIDA's Prevention Research Branch in the Division of Epidemiology and Prevention Research is co-chairing a one half day session at the Society for Prevention Research's third annual meeting on "Issues Related to the Integration of Prevention Intervention and Managed Health Care."


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