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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.

Three Scientists Receive Grants for Innovative AIDS Research

Bulletin Board, Published October 2009

Announces the recipients of the inaugural Avant-Garde Award for research to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS in drug abusers, Drs. Julio Montaner, Ileana Cristea, and Jerome Groopman.

NIDA Reprises Online Chat Day

Bulletin Board, Published October 2009

Highlights NIDA’s second annual Chat Day where NIDA scientists and staff responded to drug abuse and addiction questions from teachers and students.

Receptor Complexes Link Dopamine to Long-Term Neuronal Effects

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Discovery may open a new window on substance abuse and potential therapies.

Reports on a discovery of previously unrecognized dopamine receptors in the brain that when triggered by drug abuse lead to potentially long-term neuronal effects.

Program Reduces Girls' Delinquent Behavior

Prevention, Published October 2009
The power of the family and a focus on homework were keys to success.

Reports on a study involving adolescent girls who were treated for delinquent behaviors in a well-supervised family setting, referred to as Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care.

Manic Mice Show Heightened Sensitivity to Rewards

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Manipulation of a gene produces mice with behaviors characteristic of bipolar disorder and signs of drug abuse vulnerability.

Reports on an animal study suggesting that the manic stage of bipolar disorder promotes signs of drug abuse vulnerability by enhancing sensitivity to rewards, both natural and drug-related.

Intervention for Disruptive Children Shows Long-Term Benefits

Prevention, Published October 2009
Teaching aggressive youngsters social coping skills reduces their chances of becoming substance abusers.

Reports on research providing evidence that teaching aggressive youngsters social coping skills reduces their chances of becoming substance abusers.

Ethnic Groups Have Contrasting Genetic Risks for Nicotine Addiction

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Differences and similarities show up in genetic profiles of African-Americans and European-Americans who are heavy smokers.

Describes research exploring differences and similarities in the genetic profiles of African-Americans and European-Americans who are heavy smokers.

Suiting Treatment to the Nature of the Disease

Director's Perspective, Published October 2009

Highlights NIDA-sponsored research underway to understand and respond to substance abusers’ needs at all points of care, from the initial presentation for treatment through recovery.

Abstinent Smokers' Nicotinic Receptors Take More Than a Month to Normalize

Treatment, Published October 2009
Prolonged increase in brain receptors after smokers quit may explain the struggle to kick cigarettes and high risk for relapse during early abstinence.

Describes research revealing that for up to 6 weeks after smokers quit, their brain cells have more nicotine-binding receptors than nonsmokers, which may explain the struggle to quit.

High School Seniors Report Alcohol- or Drug-Impaired Driving Experiences

Public Health, Published April 2009

Examines the incidence of high school seniors’ alcohol- or drug-related driving experiences based on 2001 through 2006 data.

Adolescent Rats Self-Administer More Nicotine Than Adults

Basic Science, Published April 2009

Highlights an animal study involving the self-administration of nicotine among adolescent and adult rats to gain understanding of their potential vulnerability to the substance.

New Tracer for Nicotinic Receptors Promises Improved Specificity

Basic Science, Published April 2009

Reports on NIDA researchers who developed a new tracer compound that binds readily to nicotine receptors and enhances positron emission tomography images.

Court Mandates Help Men With Antisocial Personality Disorders Stay in Treatment

Treatment, Published April 2009

Reports on a study of men with co-occurring substance abuse and antisocial personality disorders and the potential benefit of judicially mandated addiction treatment.

Prenatal Nicotine Exposure May Damage Receptors That Influence Auditory Processing

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Tests correlate biochemical abnormality with deficits in rats' responses to sounds.

Reports on a series of animal experiments indicating that nicotine exposure during prenatal fetal development damages a set of receptors in the brain's auditory processing center.

Legal Pressure Increases Treatment Retention

Treatment, Published April 2009

Presents data on the length of stay in substance abuse treatment among people who were in treatment as a result of legal pressure as compared with those in treatment voluntarily.

Research Addresses Needs of Criminal Justice Staff and Offenders

NIDA @ Work, Published April 2009

Highlights a project in which nine research centers collaborate with criminal justice partners to test science-based tools for integrating drug abuse treatment in prisons and probation and parole programs.

Methamphetamine Abusers Show Increased Distractibility

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Reduced ability to choose between conflicting stimuli corresponds to neural damage.

Highlights findings from a study of former methamphetamine abusers showing evidence of impairment in areas of the brain known to influence cognition, emotion, and decision making.

Low Dopamine Receptor Availability May Promote Cocaine Addiction

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Reduced availability heightens reinforcing effects of cocaine in monkeys, and the drug drives this measure even lower.

Describes findings from an animal study showing that cocaine lowers availability of dopamine receptors in the basal ganglia, an area of the brain that includes portions of the reward system.

Stimulus Money Will Fund a Surge in Knowledge

Director's Perspective, Published April 2009

Describes NIDA’s drug abuse and addiction research priorities for the use of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funds.

Damage to Brain Area May Immediately Halt Cigarette Addiction

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Patients with injury to the insula lost the urge to smoke.

Describes a study among people who had sustained brain injuries to investigate whether certain damaged areas of the brain are associated with the ability to quit smoking.

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