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Director's Report to the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse - February, 2010

International Activities

International Honors

NIDA Director Honored by French Government for Addiction Research
NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow was awarded the International Prize from the French Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) for her pioneering work in brain imaging and addiction science. Dr. Volkow received the award at a December 17, 2009, ceremony at the College of France learning center in Paris. Inserm, a government-supported biomedical research organization, is the French equivalent of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Each year, it honors researchers for their contributions to basic and clinical research that enhance public health. Of the seven 2009 Inserm award winners, only Dr. Volkow was not from France. Dr. Volkow's selection acknowledges her innovative imaging research, which shows that drug addiction is a disease of the brain that usurps the reward circuitry and leads to compulsive behaviors. A research psychiatrist and scientist, Dr. Volkow is considered one of the world's leading specialists in the mechanisms underlying drug abuse and addiction. As NIDA's director since 2003, she leads an organization that supports most of the world's research on drug abuse and its associated health consequences.

Funding Initiatives

New NIH, International AIDS Society Grants Encourage Innovation in HIV Research
The U.S. National Institutes of Health Centers for AIDS Research Program (CFAR) and the International AIDS Society (IAS) have created a new research grant program for early career investigators with no prior experience in HIV research. The awards will provide up to $150,000 per year, for up to 2 years, depending on the proposal. IAS also will provide funding for awardees to attend IAS meetings during the period of research. Both domestic and international early stage investigators who are new to the HIV field are encouraged to apply. Applicants should have completed a terminal degree (M.D., Ph.D., or equivalent) within the last 10 years. Awards will be announced at the 2010 International AIDS Conference in Vienna.

Binational Agreement

NIDA, Dutch Addiction Programme Mark 10th Anniversary of Binational Collaboration
Celebrating a decade of progress through a uniquely successful binational agreement, officials from NIDA and the Dutch Addiction Programme (DAP) heard from jointly funded research teams at the U.S.-Netherlands Workshop on Binational Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction, which was held October 22 and 23, 2009, in Washington, DC. Workshop participants met with White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Deputy Director Dr. A. Thomas McLellan, who described the Obama Administration's priorities for drug control strategies, suggested ways that research can inform policy development, and congratulated NIDA and DAP for their "long and fruitful collaboration." NIDA and DAP representatives reviewed the factors contributing to what NIDA Deputy Director Dr. Timothy P. Condon called the Institute's "most successful international collaboration" and identified priority areas for future collaboration. NIDA IP Director Dr. Steven W. Gust and DAP Chair Dr. Sineke ten Horn chaired the workshop. Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport Senior Policy Officer Wil M. de Zwart emphasized the unique and successful collaboration and discussed the drug policy review currently underway in The Netherlands.

NIDA, Dutch Addiction Program Funds Three New Binational Research Teams
Continuing the binational funding agreement between NIDA and DAP, three new research teams have received funding to explore ways of addressing the use of and dependence on cocaine. NIDA funds the U.S. researchers; DAP supports the Dutch scientists. The newly funded teams are:

  • Dr. George Koob, Scripps Research Institute, and Dr. Judith R. Homberg, University of Nijmegen, will investigate whether an inherited serotonin transporter (5-HTT) genetic variation confers vulnerability to cocaine dependence by enhancing cocaine-induced neuroadaptations in the central corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) stress system and associated negative emotionality.
  • Dr. Christopher Pierce, University of Pennsylvania, and Dr. Louk Vanderschnuren, Utrecht University, will study striatal circuits involved in drug taking and drug seeking and further explore the efficacy of deep brain stimulation in attenuating drug-related behaviors.
  • Dr. Raymond Booth, University of Florida, and Dr. Wim van den Brink, University of Amsterdam, will continue efforts to find an efficacious medication for stimulant addiction by scaling up synthesis of potential compounds (5HT2A inverse agonist/5HT2C agonist) to conduct in vivo functional evaluation assays, which include cocaine-induced down-regulation of D2 receptor expression using single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) imaging techniques and the attenuation of cocaine consumption in rat self-administration models.

Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education Promotes NIDA International Program Activities
The Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education (MSHE) will consider collaboratively funding research grant applications submitted in response to the NIDA International Program Announcements (PAs), International Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction (R01: PA-09-020, R21: PA-09-021, and R03: PA-09-022). Mr. Wojciech Dziedzic, Director, MSHE Department for European and International Cooperation, said that the Ministry has established an administrative coordinator to promote applications in response to the PAs. MSHE also is encouraging Polish scientists to consider applying for relevant NIDA IP drug abuse research fellowships and participating in the NIDA International Forum.

Online Initiatives

Updated NIVC Offers Multiple Working Groups and Interdisciplinary Research Options
The NIDA International Virtual Collaboratory (NIVC) has been updated to permit users to join multiple discussion or work groups within NIVC and to join two other Virtual Collaboratories that foster cooperation on interdisciplinary projects. NIVC users now will be able to work virtually with researchers who belong to the NIDA/National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism Virtual Collaboratory for Integrative Behavioral Health Services Research Network or the NIMH Virtual Collaboratory for Suicide Studies.

NIDA IP encourages interested researchers to join the existing NIVC working groups or consider creating their own public or private group. Public groups accepting new members include:

  • Inhalants Broad Interest Group (IWG-Broad), chaired by NIDA consultant Dr. M. Patricia Needle, compiles resources on inhalant abuse research and conducts a discussion forum for posing questions and answers.
  • International Research Ethics, chaired by Dr. Linda Cottler, Washington University in St. Louis, focuses on drug abuse research ethical dilemmas that cross cultures and geographic borders, such as confidentiality, informed consent, conflicts with DSM and ICD efforts, and cooperation with pharmaceutical companies.
  • International Women's and Children's Health and Gender Group (InWomen), chaired by Dr. Wendee Wechsberg, RTI International, is a multidisciplinary forum that addresses all aspects of the consequences of substance use among these vulnerable populations.
  • Volatile Substance Abuse (VSA), chaired by Dr. Colleen Anne Dell, University of Saskatchewan, is comparing VSA use patterns, prevention interventions, and treatment protocols across Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Australia.

In addition to the public groups, several invitation-only groups exchange information or plan future activities, including groups for former Humphrey, INVEST, INVEST-CTN, and DISCA/USDISCA fellows and for researchers focusing on child neurodevelopment and prevention interventions.


NIDA and International AIDS Society Expand Fellowships in HIV and Drug Use Research
NIDA and the IAS have expanded their fellowship program that focuses on HIV research related to drug abuse. In 2010, four IAS/NIDA Research Fellowships in HIV and Drug Use will be awarded, doubling the number of awards made in 2009. The goal of the program is to contribute to advances in the scientific understanding of drug abuse and HIV, while fostering multinational research on the topic. Two awards of $75,000 each will be made to junior HIV and drug abuse scientists for 18-month postdoctoral training at a leading research institute in the field. Two more awards of $75,000 each will be made to well-established HIV scientists, not currently active in the drug abuse field, for 8-month professional development training on HIV and drug abuse. While applications from across the globe are welcome, scientists from Eastern Europe and Central Asia are strongly encouraged to apply. The fellowships will be announced in conjunction with the XVIII International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2010) in Vienna, Austria, July 18-23, 2010.

INVEST-CTN Fellows Present at Clinical Trials Network (CTN) Meeting
In October presentations to the NIDA CTN Steering Committee, fellows Hanhui Chen, M.D., China, and Mario Zapata, M.D., M.Sc., Colombia, reviewed the drug abuse situation in their respective countries, summarized their research during the INVEST-CTN Fellowship year, and discussed their future plans. NIDA IP and CTN support the 12-month postdoctoral training program for scientists who work with a mentor affiliated with 1 of the 16 CTN Regional Research and Training Centers.

  • Dr. Chen estimated that China has 5 million to 10 million drug users, with opiates accounting for 70 percent of problem drug use and amphetamine type stimulants accounting for 30 percent of drug use. He reported that methadone maintenance treatment has expanded rapidly since its introduction but is underutilized and that professional training and clinical research into drug treatment and prevention need to be expanded. His fellowship focused on best practices in clinical research and treatment, data analysis, and scientific writing.
  • Dr. Zapata focused on developing and implementing clinical trial protocols, learned to deliver Brief Strategic Family Therapy, and designed a pilot project to test treatment effectiveness in Colombia. Citing the dramatic increase in coca cultivation since 2005, Dr. Zapata noted that the United Nations attributes more than 50 percent of South American cocaine production to Colombia. He reported that the primary drugs of abuse among adolescents are marijuana, nitrate "poppers", cocaine, and inhalants.

NIDA Welcomes Humphrey Fellows at JHU, VCU, and Emory
Ms. Dale Weiss, NIDA IP program analyst, and Fellowships Administrator Ms. Lisa Jordre met with Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows to introduce NIDA opportunities available during the fellowships. The pair met with NIDA Humphrey Fellows in Drug Abuse and Public Health at Johns Hopkins University (JHU) on September 3, 2009; NIDA Humphrey Fellows in Substance Abuse Education, Treatment, and Prevention at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) on September 10, 2009; and NIDA Humphrey Fellows at the Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, on November 17 and 18, 2009. Ms. Weiss introduced NIDA resources, including the NIVC, a password-protected tool to support geographically distant partners in collaborative research, discussion, and education. Ms. Weiss also met individually with the fellows to discuss their research affiliations and plans for their Humphrey fellowships.

The NIDA Humphrey Fellows at JHU include:

Dr. Wali Omer, Iraq, focuses on family health and initiated a pilot project for a family health center. He is interested in technological tools to assist in development of improved service delivery for families.

Ms. Esther Arye, Ghana, a biomedical scientist working to identify sexually transmitted and other infectious diseases, will use her fellowship to learn more about epidemiology and establishing HIV/AIDS counseling programs.

Ms. Hamida Ebadi, Afghanistan, focuses on public policy development to reduce infant mortality and improve maternal health at the Afghan Ministry of Health. She will use her fellowship to focus on evidence-based policy development to reduce infant mortality and improve maternal health for women.

Mr. Kyaw Aung, Burma, is involved with a UNICEF primary care project identifying unserved and underserved health care populations. He will spend his fellowship focusing on policy development to improve maternal and child health to reduce mortality and morbidity.

Ms. Andrea Domanico, Brazil, is an ethnographer working with crack cocaine users, human rights issues related to drug addiction and incarceration, and stigma for women drug users. She will spend her fellowship learning how prevention and risk-reduction policies are developed and about research into human rights.

Dr. Sergey Koren, Russia, focuses on psychoactive substance users and drug treatment initiatives and will spend his fellowship learning about HIV prevention programs for high-risk populations and distance-learning activities.

Ms. Aysha Ghafoori, Afghanistan, is a child protection worker who works with addicted women and their children. She will spend her fellowship focusing on establishing treatment programs and developing policies to improve women's and children's health, minimize gender discrimination, and improve civil rights.

The NIDA Humphrey Fellows at VCU include:

Dr. Murilo Battisti, Brazil, investigates ecstasy and club drug use in Brazil and will use his fellowship to learn about substance abuse research to develop evidence-based practices and policies to address substance abuse among Brazilian youth.

Ms. Gabriela (Gabby) Olivera, Uruguay, focuses on violence and other gender issues that influence women's abuse of prescription drugs and alcohol. During her fellowship, she will concentrate on designing evidence-based substance abuse policies and programs.

Ms. Chinyere Celestina (Chi Chi) Okonkwo, Nigeria, has worked in psychiatric hospitals with patients relapsing to drug abuse and will use her fellowship to improve her knowledge of the behavioral aspects of drug abuse and addiction, psychological management of substance abuse, and ways to conduct research that will inform the development of better services for patients.

Mr. Mohd Muzafar Shah bin Mohd Razali, Malaysia, currently is working with VCU faculty members to design a culturally valid instrument to identify at-risk youth in Malaysia. He will use his fellowship to further refine the tool.

Mr. Valeriy Ryabukha, Ukraine, has trained with the Medford, Massachusetts, Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police and has created a pilot drug abuse prevention project in his home country. During his fellowship, he would like to identify effective prevention models that could be implemented in Ukraine and learn how to improve and obtain funding for his pilot program.

Mrs. Rawnak Aqraw, Iraq, has worked on initial assessments of drug use and psychiatrists' perceptions of substance use disorders among Iraqi patients. She will spend her fellowship learning how to design and implement evidence-based treatment programs.

Dr. Thanda Khin, Burma, focuses on drug-related HIV/AIDS in her country and will use her fellowship to learn more about epidemiology and developing and evaluating treatment and prevention programs.

The Humphrey Fellows at Emory include:

Ms. Tetiana Khristoforivna Kiriazova, Ukraine, works in health education and HIV/AIDS prevention in Odessa. During her fellowship, she will focus on HIV/AIDS policy and prevention and on skills in policy-making, strategic planning, preventive education, and monitoring and evaluation.

Dr. Myo Lwin, Burma, is responsible for organizing and promoting civil, religious, and government response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. He plans to use his fellowship to learn about sustainable public health and HIV policies for resource limited countries.

Dr. Mya Win, Burma, leads projects on the management of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and reproductive health. He plans to concentrate on HIV/AIDS public health policy, management, and leadership and community home based care during his fellowship.

Mr. Cletus Adohinzin, Benin, is responsible for assessing, evaluating, and providing advocacy for HIV/AIDS prevention and control programs. He intends to focus his fellowship on increasing his knowledge and skills in HIV/AIDS policy and prevention.

Dr. Lama Hamish Ahmad, Syria, is the Chief of the Non-Communicable Diseases Section of the Ministry of Health in Damascus. She plans to use her fellowship to learn more about public health policy, management, prevention, and international health regulation.

Dr. Rania Elsayed Hassanein, Egypt, is the Head of the Blood Issuing Department for the National Blood Transfusion Service in Egypt. During her fellowship, she will focus on public health policy and management and on blood donor practices.

Dr. Komenan Kassi, Cte D'Ivoire, is a dermatologist and skin surgeon concerned with the impact of Buruli ulcers on vulnerable populations. During his fellowship he plans to learn more about Buruli ulcer control and care and acquire new skills in public health policy and management.

Mr. Adjane Kossivi Koura, Togo, works to increase the safety and quality of blood transfusions throughout his country. During his fellowship, he hopes to learn more about public health policy and management, social marketing, and quality management in relation to blood transfusion services.

Ms. Sarmila Shrestha Shrestha, Nepal, received the 2006 "Woman of the Year" award from Soroptimist International for her dedication to the poor and marginalized. She will focus her fellowship on developing skills in behavioral change communication and the development, management, and implementation of HIV/AIDS and STD prevention and care programs.

Dr. Hoang Huy Vu, Vietnam, is a current masters degree student at Emory who has helped build capacity for managing HIV/AIDS in the workplace. During his fellowship, Dr. Vu will study HIV/AIDS policy and prevention, the social health and economic impacts, and health policy and management.

NIDA Selects Two New INVEST Fellows
NIDA has selected scientists from China and Russia as 2010 INVEST Fellows: Huaihui Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., a psychiatrist at the Shanghai Yangpu District Mental Health Center, initiated psychosocial research in local methadone maintenance treatment clinics and is especially interested in amphetamine type stimulant abuse among this population. She has served as co-Principal Investigator with Prof. Yih-ing Hser, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), on a NIDA R21 grant, Improving Methadone Maintenance Treatment Compliance and Outcomes in China. Dr. Zhang has attended training programs at UCLA, University of Miami, the German-Chinese Academy for Psychotherapy, and Hong Kong University. Working with her INVEST mentor, Richard S. Schottenfeld, M.D., Yale University, she will evaluate the prevalence, clinical correlates, and impact on treatment response of co-occurring abuse of other illicit substances among heroin-dependent patients receiving opioid agonist maintenance treatment, with the goal of informing practice guidelines and policies.

Mikhail Torban, M.D., is a research fellow at St. Petersburg Psychoneurological Scientific Institute, Russia, where he investigates injection drug use, HIV and hepatitis risk behaviors, and drug treatment. Dr. Torban is a former trainee in the International Clinical, Operational and Health Services Research Training Award for AIDS and TB program directed by his INVEST mentor, Robert Heimer, Ph.D., Yale University. Drs. Torban and Heimer have worked together since 2005, publishing two peer-reviewed articles, preparing grant applications, and conducting a research project to study the attitudes and knowledge of Russian substance abuse treatment professionals. Dr. Torban attended Johns Hopkins University Graduate Summer Institute of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and wants to improve his skills in qualitative data collection and analysis. During his INVEST Fellowship, he will use Rapid Assessment and Response protocols to explore the differences among Connecticut migrant communities to develop culturally appropriate substance abuse and HIV interventions for Bosnian, Russian, and Salvadorian injection drug users and to identify the individual, community, and structural facilitators of and barriers to care.

Travel Support

NIDA Supports 13 International Scientists at NHSN Conference
The National Hispanic Science Network (NHSN) International Conference, which was held October 29-31, 2009 in Miami, Florida, focused on interdisciplinary research on the epidemiology and prevention of cigarette, alcohol, and drug use/abuse in adolescence; interventions for the treatment of tobacco and substance abuse disorders; genetic and environmental factors that influence addiction; and mentoring and training activities to promote career development from graduate students to senior scientists. NIDA supported 13 scientists from Chile, Mexico, and Spain who presented their research at the International Poster Session. The supported scientists included:

  • Chile: Luis Caris, Universidad de Chile, and Carmen Gloria Hidalgo, Universidad Católica de Chile.
  • Mexico: Octavio Campollo, University of Guadalajara; Marycarmen Bustos Gamino, Ma. De Lourdez Gutierrez, Michelle Breton Cirett, Midiam Moreno, and Jorge Ameth Villatoro, Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatria Ramon de la Fuente Muñiz.
  • Spain: Anna Robert, Benito Menni CASM; Francisco Jose Montero-Bancalero, Fundation Forja XXI; Francisco Javier Romero, Universidad CEU Cardenal Herrera; Claudia Cristina Morales-Manrique, Universidad de Valencia; and Francisco Bueno, Plan Municipal Drogodependencias.

VII Congreso Programa Cambio
NIDA IP and the National Hispanic Science Network on Drug Abuse jointly supported the participation of Antonio Cepeda-Benito, Ph.D., Texas A&M University, as an invited speaker at the Seventh International Congress on Addiction Treatment and Prevention (VII Congreso Programa Cambio), which is sponsored by Programa Cambio. The conference was held in Cordoba, Argentina, from October 8 - 10, 2009.

Meeting on Pain and Palliative Care
At the request of the NIDA ARP, the NIDA IP supported the travel of Willem Scholten, PharmD., M.P.A., World Health Organization, to the meeting on Consultation on Pain and Palliative Care in Resource-Limited Settings, which was held on November 16 and 17, 2009, in Bethesda, Maryland. NIDA and NIH sponsored the meeting in cooperation with the William J. Clinton Foundation Clinton HIV/AIDS Initiative.

Scientist from Hungary Visits NIDA Intramural Research Program (IRP)
NIDA IP provided partial support to doctoral student Mano Aliczki from the Institute of Experimental Medicine, Hungarian National Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary, who worked with Dr. Steve Goldberg at NIDA IRP from October 29, 2009, through February 16, 2010. Mr. Aliczki trained in techniques for intravenous drug self administration in rats in order to run a series of collaborative self administration experiments that will be part of an ongoing collaboration between Dr. Goldberg and Dr. Jozsef Haller, Institute of Experimental Medicine, Hungarian National Academy of Sciences. The already fruitful collaboration should become more productive with the added capability of experiments in Budapest.

Society for Neuroscience (SfN) Annual Meeting
NIDA IP supported the participation of 16 international scientists from 13 different countries at the NIDA mini-convention, "Frontiers in Addiction Research" on Friday, October 16, 2009, in Chicago, Illinois, as part of the Society for Neuroscience (SfN) annual meeting. The following individuals traveled to the meeting and presented a poster at the Early Career Investigators Poster Session:

  • Alexis Bailey, United Kingdom
  • Alvaro Berzal, Spain
  • Veronica Bisagno, Argentina
  • Elias Blanco, Chile
  • Alicia Brusco, Argentina
  • Eric J. Downer, Ireland
  • Alexander Friedman, Israel
  • Ruth van Holst, The Netherlands
  • Tiffany T.Y. Lee, Canada
  • Liang Liu, Australia
  • Gustavo Moraga, Chile
  • Olasunmbo Owolabi, Nigeria
  • Neta Rimmerman, Israel
  • Chi Xu, China
  • Jasesuk Yun, Japan
  • Vanna Zachariou, Greece

The International Association of Forensic Toxicologist (TIAFT) Annual Meeting
The NIDA IP supported the attendance of J. Michael Walsh, Ph.D., The Walsh Group, at the TIAFT Annual Meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, on August 23-27, 2009. Dr. Walsh attended the meeting at the invitation of the European Commission (EC) and chaired a workshop session. He also met with organizers for the European Union (EU) DRUID (Driving under the Influence of Drugs, Alcohol and Medicines) project to discuss the possibilities of conducting a joint NIDA/EU conference in 2010 or 2011 to develop a 5-year plan of international collaborative research. NIDA and EC each provided partial travel support for Dr. Walsh.

International Visitors

On November 4, 2009 Mr. Mark Gilman the Regional Manager of the National Treatment Agency (NTA) for Substance Misuse in Manchester England visited NIDA. Mr. Gilman described the work done by the Agency. Mr. Gilman also described the work done by US Distinguished International Scientist Award receipient Dr. Dwayne Simpson and how valuble it was to the NTA. Meeting with Mr. Gilman from NIDA were Dr. Dionne Jones, DESPR and Dr. Steve Gust and Ms. Dale Weiss, IP.

Dr. Gustavo Turecki, Director, FRSQ Suicide Research Axis visited NIDA on November 5, 2009. The Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec (FRSQ) Quebec Suicide Research Network (QSRN) is a multidisciplinary group of researchers from all Quebec Universities that conduct suicide research. The purpose of the visit was to learn more about how NIDA is organized and about the various fellowships and exchanges offered by the NIDA International Program. Ms. Dale Weiss, IP met with Dr. Turecki.

Other International Activities

At the annual meeting of the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM), Dr. Ivan Montoya, DPMCDA, chaired the International Fellowship Session. It included the following presentations: Women's Interactive Screening to establish HIV risks: Results from effectiveness evaluation by Susanne Nemes (USA); Cross-generational transmission of violence within families of alcoholic women by Ana Pedriali (Brazil); HCV knowledge level and HCV infection among drug users in MMT clinic by Jiang Du (China); Cultural adaptations of the Therapeutic Community in a Muslim country Mahmoud Nazar (Malaysia); Epidemiology of cannabis consumption in 12-18 year old adolescents in Valencia, Spain and neighboring towns Jose Martinez-Raga (Spain). Dr. Montoya also chaired a symposium entitled "Vaccines and other large molecules for treatment of substance related disorders". It included the following presentations: Monoclonal antibodies for treating methamphetamine overdose and addiction by Mike Owens (USA); Immunotherapy for Nicotine Addiction by Paul Pentel (USA); Vaccines for the treatment of cocaine dependence Thomas Kosten (USA). Dr. Montoya also gave an oral presentation on pharmacotherapies for nicotine dependence.

Dr. Jonathan D. Pollock, DBNBR, participated in the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating facility topical workshop entitled, "Roles of Neuroinformatics in the Process of Building, Evaluating and Using Genetic Animal Models for Brain Diseases. Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, December 13-15, 2009.

Dr. Joseph Frascella, Director, DCNBR, participated in and chaired a session on neurocognitive factors in drug abuse at the U.S. - Netherlands Workshop on Bi-National Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction held in Washington, DC, October 22-23, 2009.

Dr. Wilson M. Compton, Director, DESPR, presented on Screening and Brief Intervention or Referral to Treatment at the Experts Meeting of CIDAD, Mexico City, Mexico September 29 to October 1, 2009.

Dr. Wilson M. Compton presented on Mainstreaming Addictions in Medicine at the International Council on Alcohol and Addictions, Estoril, Portugal, October 13-15, 2009.

Dr. Wilson M. Compton presented on Understanding Addiction as a Brain Disease to the SANCA-INL Conference, Cape Town, South Africa, October 18-20, 2009.

Drs. Wilson M. Compton, Elizabeth Robertson and Eve Reider participated in an experts panel on drug abuse prevention with the Mentor International Foundation at the Residence of the Swedish Ambassador, October 22, 2009. The purpose of the meeting was for Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden and Mentor to meet with and learn about the work and role of key organizations working in the drug field within the United States and explore the development of Mentor's work in the USA in order to promote positive collaboration and cooperation between organizations. Participants included members of the Mentor Foundation, Office of National Drug Control Policy, NIDA, and SAMHSA.

Dr. Wilson M. Compton presented on Addiction as a Neuropsychiatric Medical Condition to the Ministry of Health, Rome, Italy, November 4-5, 2009.

Moira O'Brien, DESPR, gave a presentation on "Public Health Drug Abuse Surveillance in the United States" at the World Health Organization (WHO) meeting, "Monitoring Systems for Alcohol, Drugs and other Psychoactive Substance Use: Review of Current Practices," held in Valencia, Spain, October 22-23, 2009.

Dr. Tom Hilton, DESPR, represented NIDA at the 2009 Work Stress & Health Conference held in Puerto Rico November 5 through 9, 2009. He also served on the conference organizing committee and chaired a symposium.

Dr. Jag Khalsa, DPMCDA, chaired two symposia: "Clinical Implications of Research on Genetics of Drug Addiction", and "Medical Co-morbidity in Children Prenatally Exposed to Drugs of Abuse" at the annual meeting of the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM), in Calgary, Canada, September 24-27, 2009. He also co-chaired two other symposia: one with Dr. Greg Bunt entitled: "Drug Addiction Research in the International Settings" and another with Dr. Ahmed Elkashef from DPMCDA entitled "Advances in the Pharmacotherapies of Drug Abuse". In addition, Dr. Khalsa replaced Dr. Mark Willenbring (NIAAA) in the role of chair of the symposium entitled "Alcohol Research in Developing Countries."

Dr. Amy Newman, IRP, was invited to give a lecture at the University of Bath, Department of Medicinal Chemistry, Bath, U.K., in September 2009.

Dr. Yun Wang, IRP, presented "Bone Morphogenetic Protein-7 Reduces Methamphetamine-mediated Neurotoxicity" at the 2nd International Drug Abuse Research Society/International Society for Neurochemistry Satellite Meeting, Seoul, Korea, August 17-21, 2009.

Dr. Jonathan Katz, IRP, initiated collaborations with Dr. Juan J. Canales, Biopsychology and Comparative Neuroscience Group, Cavanilles Institute (ICBiBE), University of Valencia - FGUV.

Dr. Marilyn Huestis, IRP, traveled to Montreal, Canada to finalize the new 2010 Prohibited Drug List for the World Anti-doping Agency's (WADA) Prohibited List Committee.

Dr. Marilyn Huestis gave a plenary address at the International Association of Therapeutic Drug Monitoring and Clinical Toxicology meeting in Montreal, Canada in October 2009. Dr. Marta Concheiro received an international fellowship to attend the meeting and present her research on in utero drug exposure to buprenorphine and illicit drugs.

Dr. Marilyn Huestis was a plenary speaker at the XVI Brazilian Congress of Toxicology held in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Dr. Huestis discussed the global problem of Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID) and the usefulness of Alternative Matrices for Biological Monitoring of drug exposure. She also taught a five-day graduate course in toxicology at the University of Sao Paolo, Ribeiro Preto, Brazil for post-doctoral and doctoral students at the School of Medicine.

Dr. Marilyn Huestis was the guest of the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park, IMIM-Hospital del Mar in Barcelona, Spain in December 2009. She gave lectures on CDM's recent research in the field of in utero drug exposure and on disposition of drugs in alternative matrices. She also met with investigators and students in the Pediatrics Department and the Neuropsychopharmacology Program.


Research Findings

Program Activities

Extramural Policy and Review Activities

Congressional Affairs

International Activities

Meetings and Conferences

Media and Education Activities

Planned Meetings


Staff Highlights

Grantee Honors

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