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NIDA Home > Publications > Director's Reports > September, 2007 Index    

Director's Report to the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse - September, 2007

Media and Education Activities

Press Releases

June 14, 2007 - HBO Producers win NIDA/CPDD Media Award for Documentary series "Addiction."
The National Institute on Drug Abuse and the College on Problems of Drug Dependence jointly presented the 2007 Media Award to John Hoffman, Vice President, Home Box Office (HBO) Documentary, for his role in co-producing the groundbreaking HBO documentary series "Addiction."

May 31, 2007 - NIDA Announces New Tools for Drug Abuse Treatment.
Two new products designed to speed the adoption of science-based interventions into clinical practice are now available from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. These new "Blending Team" products are part of an expanding portfolio that includes the latest research findings on drug abuse approaches and interventions. Blending Teams are composed of NIDA researchers, community-based substance abuse treatment practitioners, and trainers from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's Addiction Technology Transfer Center Network. In addition to the Blending Teams, NIDA sponsors a number of Blending conferences which are held periodically around the country to facilitate communication between researchers and treatment providers.

May 21, 2007 - NIDA Offers Psychiatrists a Look at State-of-the-Science on Addiction and Mental Illnesses.
The Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse challenged psychiatrists to learn more about the importance of substance abuse as a factor in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses. At the American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting, Dr. Nora Volkow spoke at a three-day NIDA-sponsored research program track, "The Science of Addiction: Translating New Insights Into Better Psychiatric Practice." The program included a look at the interplay between genes and the environment, and closed with a discussion on the challenges of addiction and co-occurring mental illnesses.

May 8, 2007 - NIDA Looks at Non-Injection Drug Use and Spread of HIV/AIDS.
More than 500 scientists, clinicians and public health specialists met at the NIH to discuss the latest research on drug abuse and the evolving epidemic of HIV/AIDS. This was the first-ever two-day public meeting at NIH to include a focus on non-injection drug use and HIV transmission.

May 8, 2007 - NIDA NewsScan #50 - HIV/AIDS Issue

  • HIV/STI Risk Behaviors in Delinquent Youth: A Community Health Problem
  • Many Male Inmates Willing To Undergo Rapid HIV Testing
  • Study Shows Value of HIV Screenings in Virtually All Health Settings
  • HBCU Students Willing To Accept Rapid HIV Testing; Those Most Likely To Consent Have a High Perceived Risk of Infection
  • First Molecular Examination of HIV in High-Risk People Along U.S.-Mexico Border
  • Adding HIV Risk Reduction Strategies to Drug Abuse Treatment Has Favorable Outcomes for Pregnant Women at Risk of Infection
  • Study Investigates Impact of Partner HIV Status, Sexuality on Sex Practices of Methamphetamine- Abusing, HIV+ Men
  • Minority Women with Dysthymia, a Form of Depression, May Be Less Likely To Receive HAART
  • Managing Substance Abuse and HIV in Malaysia

May 7, 2007 - NIDA Survey Shows Most People with Drug Use Disorders Never Get Treatment.
Only 8 percent of people identified as drug abusers, and fewer than 40 percent of those diagnosed with drug dependence, have ever gotten any kind of intervention or treatment, according to the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions.

April 3, 2007 - NIDA Supported Study Shows Significant Association between Smoking, Mental Disorders in Pregnant Women.
New research has identified an association between mental disorders and nicotine dependence among pregnant women in the United States, not unlike what has been reported in the general population. The presence of these mental disorders in nicotine addicted pregnant women may make quitting smoking more difficult. This study supported in part by NIDA, was published in the April 2007 issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

April 2, 2007 - NIDA Survey Shows Lack of Substance Abuse Treatment Options for Offenders.
Substance abuse treatment services for offenders are not widely available in all phases of the correctional system, according to the first set of findings from a national survey funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The National Criminal Justice Treatment Practices Survey (NCJTPS) provides a picture of existing treatment programs across all correctional settings, including prison, jails, probation and parole offices, and local community correction agencies for juvenile and adult offenders. The survey findings were published in a special issue of the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment.

April 2, 2007 - NIDA Study Identifies Genes That Might Help Some People Abstain From Smoking.
Scientists supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse have for the first time identified genes that might increase a person's ability to abstain from smoking. The breakthrough research was conducted by Dr. George Uhl at NIDA's Intramural Research Program and a team led by Dr. Jed Rose at the Center for Nicotine and Smoking Cessation Research at Duke University Medical Center.

March 3, 2007 - NIDA NewsScan #49 - Pain Opioids and Addiction Issue

  • Physician Concerns Regarding Prescribing Opiates for Chronic Pain
  • Researchers Assess Adolescents' Motivations To Abuse Prescription Medications
  • Study Reveals a New Cellular Adaptation that Contributes to Opiate Tolerance
  • URB597 Relieves Pain in Rats Without Cannabinoid-Associated Side Effects
  • Managing the Impact of Pain: Antidepressants May Be Useful Part of Pain Therapy

Articles of Interest

July 16, 2007, TIME Magazine—"How We Get Addicted"—Interview with Nora D. Volkow, M.D., Joseph Frascella Ph.D., and Frank Vocci, Ph.D.

July 10, 2007, USA Today—"Does Food 'Addiction' Explain Explosion of Obesity?"—Interview with Nora D. Volkow, M.D.

May/June, 2007, Bethesda Magazine—"This is Your Kid's Brain on..."—Interview with Susan Weiss, Ph.D.

Other Interviews

Dr. George R. Uhl, IRP, gave numerous US and international interviews in conjunction with publication of the first genome- wide association study for human genetic variations that underlie the ability to successfully quit smoking.

July 18, 2007, ReachMD, an XM Radio channel that covers a wide spectrum of medical issues. Dr. Joseph Frascella was interviewed on the topic of the science of addiction.

August 2007, Women's Health Magazine. Dr. Joseph Frascella was interviewed for an article on the topic of food addiction.

May 2007, Teen Vogue. Dr. Steven Grant was interviewed for an article on the resurgence of cocaine use.

June 2007, Daily Health News. Dr. Steven Grant was interviewed for an article on advances in brain imaging in substance abuse research.

Dr. Frank Vocci, Director, DPMCDA, was interviewed by the following people:

  • Ben Merrens of Wisconsin NPR on Addiction.
  • Dr. Larry Kashel of XM radio on the nicotine vaccine and other new medications to aid smoking cessation.
  • Yvonne Wenger of the Charleston Post and Courier on cocaine dependence.
  • Alaric De Arment of the Michigan City News Dispatch on abuse of methadone and its consequences.

Educational and Outreach Activities

Heads Up: Real News About Drugs and Your Body
Through a continuing partnership, the National Institute on Drug Abuse and SCHOLASTIC INC, the global children's publishing and media company, distribute information on the health effects of drugs to nearly 2 million students and teachers in grades 5 through 10 nationwide four times per year, with an emphasis on grades 7 and above. The information is distributed via 2- to 4-page article inserts. Magazines that include Heads Up are Junior Scholastic®, Science World®, CHOICES®, SCOPE®, ACTION®, and Up Front®. Student and Teacher compilations were completed for the 2006/07 school year, covering The Science of Addiction, Tobacco Addiction and Secondhand Smoke, Stress and Drug Abuse, and Health Literacy and Drug Abuse. NIDA is unique in that Heads Up is the only regular "run-of-book" insert included in any Scholastic magazine. In addition, the first article for the 2007/08 school year was completed for distribution in September 2007. This article covers the less obvious consequences of drug abuse, affecting perception, cognition, motor skills, and is the first of two articles this year focusing on decision making.

Brain Awareness Week Activities
On March 14 and 16, 2007, the National Institute on Drug Abuse once again participated in Brain Awareness Week at the National Museum of Health and Medicine. Sponsored by the Dana Alliance, this event has taken place for 12 years. This year, NIDA scientists played "Brain Game Challenge" with 6-8th grade students. The students had the opportunity to learn new information about drug abuse, the brain and the body. They also received numerous publications, pencils and other handouts. As an indication of the popularity of the game, the students often did not want to leave when it was time to rotate to another station.

Take Your Child to Work Day
On April 26, 2007, the National Institute on Drug Abuse participated in the NIH sponsored Take Your Child to Work day. During this event, children of NIH staff circulate to stations set up by the various institutes. NIDA played "Brain Game Challenge," which gave the children the opportunity to learn facts about their brains as well as drug abuse and addiction. The children also received numerous NIDA publications, pencils, erasers, and other handouts. As with Brain Awareness Week, the game was very popular and the children frequently wanted to continue playing at the end of the game.

NIDA Physician's Outreach Project
The purpose of NIDA's Physician Outreach Project is to increase primary care physicians' awareness of NIDA-funded research, the medical consequences of drug abuse and addiction and to provide physicians with the information and resources they need to incorporate research findings into clinical practice. As part of this physician outreach project, NIDA is collaborating with the American Medical Association, other physician specialty organizations, and State, county, and local medical societies. An overview of this project's key activities is provided below. The NIDA Centers of Excellence for Physician Information (CoEs), designed to reach physicians-in-training in medical schools, have come in from the field on surveys related to core competencies and the most effective means and products to reach medical students. Pilot products are being developed and the CoEs involved have committed to including the eventual final products in the required curricula. These include:

  • Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, NE
  • University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine (in collaboration with Drexel University College of Medicine)
  • University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences
  • Massachusetts Consortium of Medical Schools (which includes the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, and Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance)

Recent and Upcoming Confernences/Exhibits

NAADAC The Association for Addiction Professionals Annual Conference
Nashville, TN
September 5-8, 2007
National Prevention Network 20th Annual Prevention Research Conference
Portland, OR
September 16-19, 2007
Latino Behavioral Health Institute 13th Annual Conference
Los Angeles, CA
October 2-4, 2007
American Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence National Conference
San Diego, CA
October 20-24, 2007
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 54th Annual Meeting
Boston, MA
October 23-28, 2007
National Conference on Tobacco or Health
Minneapolis, MN
October 24-26, 2007
American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition
San Francisco, CA
October 27-30, 2007
American Public Health Association 135th Annual Meeting and Exposition
Washington, DC
November 3-7, 2007
National Middle School Association 34th Annual Conference and Exhibit
Houston, TX
November 8-10, 2007


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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