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NIDA Home > Publications > NIDA Notes > Vol. 20, No. 5 > Bulletin Board

 
Bulletin Board
Vol. 20, No. 5 (April 2006)



Clinical Trials Network Adds Texas and Appalachia Sites

NIDA's Clinical Trials Network (CTN) now encompasses 17 sites across the United States. The CTN sites, called nodes, bring together community treatment providers and academic researchers in partnerships that speed clinical research and shorten the time needed from validation of new approaches to implementation in community treatment centers. The new additions to the CTN are:

  • The Texas Node, centered at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, which includes 11 community treatment providers in Dallas-Ft. Worth, Austin, and El Paso; and
  • The Appalachian Tri-State Node, which includes a research group at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in partnership with five community treatment providers in West Virginia, eastern Ohio, and western Pennsylvania.

In the 6 years since its inauguration, the CTN has enrolled more than 5,000 patients in 16 protocols being evaluated at 103 community treatment programs. Five additional protocols currently are recruiting and enrolling an estimated 2,200 participants across 38 community treatment programs. For more detailed information, go to www.drugabuse.gov/CTN/.

 

NIDA Launches HIV/AIDS Public Awareness Campaign

The link between drug abuse and HIV infection is the focus of a new public awareness campaign launched by NIDA on November 29, 2005. NIDA Director Nora D. Volkow, M.D., announced the campaign and screened "Text Message," a new public service announcement (PSA) aimed at teenagers, during a press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. "Drug abuse prevention is HIV prevention," says Dr. Volkow. "In recent years, the number of young people in the United States diagnosed with AIDS rose substantially. Because drug use encourages risky behaviors that can promote HIV transmission, NIDA views drug abuse prevention and treatment as essential HIV prevention."

The PSA shows young women text messaging on cell phones about a friend who contracted HIV after using drugs and having sex at a party. The dialogue says, "She got high, got stupid, and now she has HIV." The announcement is being aired on television stations across the country.

The PSA was produced in collaboration with students from the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, a Washington, D.C., public high school. Students were involved in developing the concept for the PSA and also performed the lead roles. The intent is to dispel the myth that only intravenous drug abuse can lead to HIV infection and to promote awareness of the consequences of the risky sexual behavior that can follow any type of drug abuse.

Text Message PSA

"Before working on the PSA, I was more concerned about pregnancy as a result of unprotected sex than HIV infection, which seemed only to affect older people," said Ellington student Rebecca Hollingsworth. Research has shown that this view is widespread: A large proportion of youths are not concerned about becoming infected with HIV, despite the fact that young people between the ages of 13 and 24 represent a growing percentage of new infections.

NIDA has formed a coalition with organizations including the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; the AIDS Alliance for Children, Youth and Families; and the United Negro College Fund Special Programs Corporation to get this important message about the link between drug abuse and HIV infection to teenagers and young adults. In addition to the PSA, which will be aired on television stations across the United States, posters advertising NIDA's message—"Drug Abuse and HIV: Learn the Link"—will be displayed on public transportation and buses in Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Dallas.

NIDA's public awareness campaign also includes a recently launched Web site, www.hiv.drugabuse.gov, where visitors can browse publications such as the new HIV/AIDS Research Report, download the PSA, and read about the latest scientific findings on the relationship between drug abuse and HIV infection.

 

Volume 20, Number 5 (April 2006)


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