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

International Activities

Dr. Jack Blaine (DCSR) and Dr. Zili Sloboda (DEPR) represented NIDA at the U.S.-Mexico Addiction Research Development Workshop and Symposium on "The Role of Risk-Taking Behavior in Alcohol and Drug Use" in Mexico City during March. Dr. Blaine served as U.S. cochair for the treatment working group; Dr. Sloboda was U.S. cochair for the working group in social-behavioral epidemiology. The workshop was one of a series to launch a new U.S.-Mexico Cooperative Biomedical and Behavioral Research Program under an agreement between NIH and the National Science and Technology Council of Mexico (CONACYT). Dr. M. Patricia Needle, International Program, will continue to serve as liaison with the Fogarty International Center in the further development of training and research collaboration between NIDA and Mexican scientists.

Mr. Nicholas Kozel (DEPR) participated in the meeting of the National Coordinators for Epidemiologic Surveillance of Drug Use in Central America, Panama, and the Dominican Republic during April. Dr. Patricia Needle, International Program, also met with the group to discuss opportunities for the development of research collaboration with NIDA scientists. The meeting was sponsored by the Organization of American States and the Pan American Health Organization.

Dr. Robert Battjes, Acting Director, DCSR, attended the 6th International Conference on the Reduction of Drug Related Harm in Florence, Italy, March 26-30, 1995. On March 25, he also represented NIDA at the opening ceremony of an exhibition on "Drugs and the Brain," sponsored by Professor Pietro Corsi, University of Cassino. This exhibition, for which NIDA staff and grantees provided technical guidance, was held in Florence from March 27 to April 29.

A series of collaborative studies on the "Action of Thyrotropin Releasing Hormone on Morphine-Induced Analgesia and Preference in Two Inbred Rat Strains" between the Preclinical Pharmacology Laboratory, Behavioral Pharmacology and Genetics Section of the IRP (Drs. Steven Goldberg and Gregory Elmer) and the Laboratory of Pharmacology of Narcotic Drugs and Experimental Therapy of Drug Abuse, State Research Center of Addictions, Moscow, Russia have been completed and published.

As part of the collaborative research projects between the Institute of Psychiatry, London, and NIDA's Intramural Research Program on properties of drugs and drug mixtures, a report titled "Evaluation of the Discriminative Stimulus Effects of Midazolam and Morphine Alone and in Combination Using 2- and 3-Lever Drug Discrimination Procedures in Rats" was published in NIDA Research Monograph 291, 1994. Authors are C.A. Sannerud, J.A. White, S.R. Goldberg, and I.P. Stolerman.

Dr. Amy Newman (IRP Psychobiology Section) has been working with Dr. Yuri P. Belov of Russia. Dr. Belov's stay is funded through the Fogarty International Center. Dr. Belov's research has focused on the separation of enantiomers of chiral compounds that have affinity for the dopamine transporter and compounds that have affinity for dopamine D1 receptors.
With sponsorship from the U.S.-India Fund, Dr. Richard Needle (DEPR) represented NIDA at the Indo-U.S. Workshop on "Behavioral Research Priorities: Developing Effective Strategies for the Prevention of HIV in India," in Bombay from April 24-27. Dr. Clyde McCoy (University of Miami School of Medicine) also participated in the workshop. Following the workshop, Dr. Needle also conferred with U.S. Embassy Science Attache F. Gray Handley and Dr. S.D. Sharma, Director of the Institute of Human Behavior and Allied Sciences in New Delhi, on agenda preparation for an Indo-U.S. workshop on drug abuse research methodologies to be held in New Delhi in early 1996.

Mr. Nicholas Kozel (DEPR) participated in the Thai Epidemiology Work Group meeting on March 1-3 and cochaired the East Asian Multi-City Epidemiology Work Group meeting on March 6-10. Both meetings were held in Bangkok, Thailand, and were funded by the U.S. Department of State.

Dr. Mario de la Rosa met with staff of the Narcotics Matters Section at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, during March. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the feasibility of conducting workshops in 1995 on the use of quantitative and qualitative methods for assessing drug use patterns and trends. This workshop would be the first in a series with Andean country researchers and will be supported through a Letter of Agreement with the Department of State.

Dr. Rebecca Ashery (DEPR) presented a paper "The WHEEL Project: Assessing a Community-Based Model for Preventing HIV/AIDS Among Women" at a February meeting of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.

Dr. Steven Goldberg, Chief of the Preclinical Pharmacology Laboratory, Division of Intramural Research, was invited to give a presentation entitled "Preclinical Evaluation of Drug Abuse Liability," at the Jikei University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan, April 19-21, 1995.

NIDA's INVEST Research Fellowship Program has received 12 applications from 10 countries for the 1995-96 fellowship year. The International Program office will announce the awards by June 1, 1995.

The selection panel for the review of applicants for the 1995-96 NIDA Hubert H. Humphrey Drug Abuse Research Fellowship has taken place, and recommendations have been forwarded to the United States Information Agency for review and concurrence. Humphrey Fellowship awards will be announced in early June.

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