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Genetic Overlap Between Substance Abuse and Bipolar Disorder

Basic Science, Published April 2010

Describes a literature analysis reporting on the prevalence of people with bipolar disorder who also have a substance use disorder and discusses the genetic link that may contribute to this comorbidity.

Stroop Test Identifies Patients at Risk for Treatment Dropout

Treatment, Published April 2010

Reports on a study of cocaine abusers revealing that the Stroop test may predict which cocaine abusers are likely to drop out of therapy.

Peer Interaction Enhances Adolescent Rats' Drug Reward

Basic Science, Published April 2010

Describes an animal study reporting that peer interaction enhances adolescent rats’ drug reward and discusses the impact of these findings to future research on drug reward in social context.

Some Teens Reporting Nonmedical Use of Prescriptions Develop Disorders

Public Health, Published April 2010

Reports teen drug abuse based on 2006-2007 data from a national survey on drug use and health and compares differences by gender.

Injection Drug Users Acquire Hepatitis C Infection Later in Developed Countries

Public Health, Published April 2010

Reports trends in onset of injection drug use to infection with hepatitis C virus in developed countries and notes the influence of prevention efforts.

Workgroup Directs Search for Genes That Influence Addiction

NIDA @ Work, Published April 2010

Highlights NIDA’s research portfolio to identify the genes and genetic processes responsible for a person’s vulnerability to drug abuse.

Helping Doctors Become First Responders to Substance Abuse

Director's Perspective, Published April 2010

Describes a toolkit that guides doctors in assessing a patient’s risk of developing an addiction problem, advising patients on the effects of substance abuse, and arranging for referrals.

Behavior Game Played in Primary Grades Reduces Later Drug-Related Problems

Prevention, Published April 2010
Positive effects are most pronounced in disruptive boys.

Presents research findings on a study to test the effectiveness of a classroom activity designed to instill appropriate behavior during children’s first 2 years of school.

James A. Inciardi (1939-2009)

Bulletin Board, Published April 2010

Remembers Dr. James A. Inciardi, founder and co-director of the Center for Drug and Alcohol Studies and professor at the University of Delaware, who died on November 23, 2009.

How-To Guides Provide Tips for Publishing Addiction-Related Articles

Bulletin Board, Published April 2010

Describes a book and online tutorial for young investigators of addiction science that provides tips for publishing their studies in scholarly journals.

Dr. Phil Skolnick Now Leads NIDA's Medications Development Efforts

Bulletin Board, Published April 2010

Announces the appointment of Dr. Phil Skolnick as NIDA’s director of the Division of Pharmacotherapies and Medical Consequences of Drug Abuse.

Attention to Bipolar Disorder Strengthens Substance Abuse Treatment

Treatment, Published April 2010
Integrated group counseling improves outcomes in a difficult-to-treat dual-disorder population.

Describes a study of participants who had both substance abuse and bipolar disorder to investigate the potential benefits of integrated group therapy for this population.

Report Discusses Co-Occurrence of Drug Abuse and Other Mental Disorders

Treatment, Published December 2009

Describes an updated report on the co-occurrence, or comorbidity, of substance use disorders and other psychiatric disorders such as ADHD, schizophrenia, and depression.

Study Gives Green Light to Antiretroviral Medications for HIV-Infected Injection Drug Users

Treatment, Published December 2009
HIV mortality rates were similar regardless of whether patients used illicit injection drugs.

Reports finding from a study showing that access to antiretroviral therapies, HAART in particular, can improve the health of HIV-infected patients who have a history of injection drug use.

Test Substance Attenuates Signs of Cocaine Withdrawal in Rats

Treatment, Published December 2009

Reports on several drugs that may ward off depression and anxiety, common withdrawal symptoms from cocaine, based on an animal study.

Recovery May Be Harder for Adolescents, Animal Study Suggests

Treatment, Published December 2009

Reports animal study findings that suggest adolescents' heightened sensitivity to drug reward puts them at enhanced risk of addiction and may also increase their challenges in recovery.

Rats Reared Alone Show ADHD Signs

Basic Science, Published December 2009

Describes an animal study showing that rats raised in isolation may prove useful in future studies exploring the neurobiology that links impulsivity and vulnerability to addiction.

Recovery Checkup System Helps Substance Abusers Who Have Mental Disorders

Treatment, Published December 2009
Benefits include quicker return to treatment when recovery falters and longer retention.

Reports on a posttreatment intervention to support recovery that may be especially beneficial for substance abusers with co-occurring mental disorders.

Rare Glutamate Receptor Proliferates After Cocaine Withdrawal

Basic Science, Published December 2009
Molecular change in rat brains parallels increase in drug-seeking behavior.

Reports findings that a rare neuroreceptor may be linked to the intensive cravings cocaine abusers experience during their first weeks of abstinence.

Teens With Unhealthy Weight-Control Behavior Are More Likely to Abuse Drugs

Public Health, Published December 2009

Highlights data on unhealthy eating behaviors, such as fasting or purging, and substance abuse problems among teens.

NIDA's 35th Anniversary: Science Focused on Solutions

Director's Perspective, Published December 2009

Commemorates NIDA’s 35th anniversary and highlights some of the major accomplishments since the Institute’s inception in 1974.

Recognition for NIDA Notes Science Writing

Bulletin Board, Published December 2009

Announces NIDA Notes’ first place 2009 award that salutes superior communications efforts of government agencies.

Substance Abuse and Sexual Risk Show Town-Gown Divide

Public Health, Published December 2009

Compares data on substance abuse and sexual risk among college students and their peers who do not attend college.

Program Aims to Expand Physician Training to Treat Drug Addiction

Bulletin Board, Published December 2009

Describes the American Board of Addiction Medicine’s new program offering certification to physicians in addiction medicine.

Studies Link Family of Genes to Nicotine Addiction

Basic Science, Published December 2009
Genes for protein constituents of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors influence early smoking responses and the likelihood of nicotine dependence.

Reports study results suggesting that genes for several acetylcholine receptor proteins influence early smoking responses and the likelihood of nicotine dependence.

Anticipation of Methadone Enhances Brain Reactivity to Heroin Cues

Treatment, Published December 2009

Describes findings of a study revealing that images of heroin preparation and injection can incite craving and excite brain areas associated with reward-seeking even in methadone-maintained patients.

United States Ranks First in Lifetime Use of Three Drugs

Public Health, Published November 2009

Highlights the disproportionately high rate of Americans who have used cocaine at some time during their lives as compared with other nations surveyed.

Smokers Who Quit May Have Genetic Advantage

Treatment, Published November 2009
Genes also seem to influence which smoking cessation technique works best for each person.

Describes research providing evidence that genes may influence how successful a person is in quitting smoking and which cessation technique may work best for them.

Methadone Therapy in Prison Benefits Men a Year Out

Treatment, Published November 2009

Describes clinical trial results providing evidence that methadone maintenance to men in prison can pay off in better retention in community treatment and reduced drug abuse following their release.

Patch Delivers Buprenorphine for Heroin Detox

Treatment, Published November 2009

Describes research on the effectiveness of a buprenorphine patch to alleviate opioid withdrawal symptoms of newly abstinent heroin abusers.

Methamphetamine Turns Helper Cells Into Destroyers

Basic Science, Published November 2009

Describes research providing evidence that chronic methamphetamine abuse is associated with increased microglial cell activity in the brain leading to neurodegeneration.

Nicotine Boosts Mood, Brain Dopamine Levels

Basic Science, Published November 2009

Highlights findings from a study showing that nicotine triggers a surge in levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain's main reward area for cigarette smokers.

Most People Entering Drug Treatment Have Additional Mental Health Problems

Public Health, Published November 2009

Highlights data on the prevalence of people entering substance abuse treatment programs who also reported having at least one co-occurring mental health problem.

DESPR Identifies Drug Abuse Trends and Seeks Solutions

NIDA @ Work, Published November 2009

Discusses the work of NIDA’s Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research, organized to track drug use and provide empirically based information for researchers and service providers.

Naltrexone via Skin Patch Proves Effectiveness of New Technology

Treatment, Published November 2009
Microneedles will enable transdermal delivery of more medications.

Reports on a new device that creates tiny painless punctures in the skin to allow medication to flow evenly from a skin patch into dermal capillaries and the bloodstream.

Extended Cocaine Exposure Impairs Cognitive Function in Rats

Basic Science, Published November 2009
Declines in a dopamine receptor parallel deficits in vigilance and mental flexibility.

Reports an animal study presenting evidence that cocaine causes cognitive deficits that can persist well into abstinence.

Substance Abuse Among Troops, Veterans, and Their Families

Director's Perspective, Published November 2009

Highlights the need for research to assess and find solutions to a potential rise in substance abuse among service men and women, veterans, and their families.

Computer-Based Interventions Promote Drug Abstinence

Treatment, Published November 2009
Interactive multimedia therapies may reduce costs and extend access to treatment.

Discusses the work of researchers who have begun to harness the potential of computers to reinforce and expand upon the well-established benefits of recovery therapy delivered by a counselor.

NIDA Awards Prizes at International Science Fair

Bulletin Board, Published November 2009

Announces the 2009 high school student recipients of the Addiction Science Awards and describes their winning addiction-focused projects.

New Advisory Council Members

Bulletin Board, Published November 2009

Announces the addition of three new members to NIDA’s National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse.

Annual Event Teaches Students Brain Science

Bulletin Board, Published November 2009

Highlights activities held during Brain Awareness Week for students in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC, to learn about brain anatomy and function.

R. Christopher Pierce Receives the Waletzky Memorial Award

Bulletin Board, Published November 2009

Announces the recipient of a 2009 award for innovation in research on drug addiction and alcoholism whose research focuses on the cellular changes that occur in response to chronic cocaine abuse.

Antibody Fragment Removes Methamphetamine From the Brain

Treatment, Published November 2009
Immune approach shows promise for treating overdose.

Reports animal study findings on development of an antibody fragment that rapidly removes methamphetamine from the brain and discusses implications for treatment of overdose.

Lower Rates of Cigarette and Marijuana Smoking Among Exercising Teens

Public Health, Published October 2009

Highlights prevalence rates of cigarette and marijuana smoking among teens who exercise regularly as compared with their less active peers.

Smoking and Drinking Continue to Decline, But Marijuana Stalls in Latest MTF Survey

Public Health, Published October 2009

Highlights trends from a 2008 survey of teenage substance abuse, cigarette smoking and alcohol use and discusses the implications of these changing data.

Methamphetamine Abuse Alters Response to Facial Cues

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Highlights research showing methamphetamine abusers may have more difficulty than nonabusers in responding with empathy and self-control to people who are experiencing intense emotions.

Sensory Aspects of Smoking May Counter Bad Mood, Craving

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Describes study findings revealing that the act of smoking, apart from actual or expected nicotine delivery, may soothe a smoker's negative mood.

Drug Cues Outside Awareness Rapidly Trigger Brain's Emotion Centers

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Describes research showing that cocaine abusers appear to have a rapid neural response to reward cues outside of their awareness, possibly signifying vulnerability to relapse.

Combined Treatments Improve Dual Abstinence

Treatment, Published October 2009

Reports on a study investigating the effectiveness of a combined therapy of disulfiram and naltrexone for people who abuse cocaine and alcohol.

Conferees Discuss Ways to Eliminate Disparities in Care

Bulletin Board, Published October 2009

Presents highlights of a meeting summit to discuss ways to eliminate disparities in care, particularly as they relate to drug abuse and HIV.