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Research Training Sites

Revised September 2015

Pre-doctoral Training

University of Maryland

Pre-doctoral training program at the intersection of basic process research and clinical intervention for substance use. The program offers a wide range of interdisciplinary research and applied experiences at the University Of Maryland, College Park as well as with affiliated faculty at institutions in the greater Washington DC area (e.g., NIH, University of Maryland Medical School, Johns Hopkins University). In the context of a translational research project, trainees will receive joint supervision from one mentor affiliated with the cross-disciplinary Neuroscience and Cognitive Sciences (NACS) Program and the other mentor affiliated with the Center for Addictions, Personality, and Emotion Research (CAPER). Professional development will be a core feature of the program, including participation in an interactive speaker series, training in ethical conduct across both research and applied domains, access to research and clinical opportunities with underserved populations, and development of grant writing skills.
Project Directors: Carl W. Lejuez, Ph.D. (Clinical Core Director)
clejuez@psyc.umd.edu and
Cynthia Moss, Ph.D. (Basic Process Core Director)

University of Michigan

Interdisciplinary training program with research opportunities ranging from the level of molecular biology, to integrative and systems neuroscience to behavioral pharmacology. Faculty study a wide range of abused substances and neural systems related to their actions, including opioids, psychomotor stimulants, PCP, nicotine and sedative-hypnotics.
Project Director: Terry Robinson, Ph.D.

University of North Carolina

The Predoctoral training program at the University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill provides training in areas related to drug and alcohol abuse, including an emphasis in the following research areas: neurobiology, neuropharmacology, neuroimmunology, behavioral pharmacology and genetic/behavioral correlates of drug dependence. Research ranges from animal models to human studies and training covers both neurobiological and behavioral approaches. Prospective applicants can enter the program either through the Behavioral Neuroscience program within the Department of Psychology or through the Biological, Biomedical Sciences Program within the School of Medicine.
Program Director: Regina Carelli, Ph.D.

University of Texas at Austin

This broad-based neuroscience predoctoral training program offers the opportunity for conducting cross-disciplinary research in collaborating laboratories. Faculty research interests range from the molecular, through the biochemical, physiological, and electrophysiological, to the behavioral and computational. Trainees will choose laboratories in which they will conduct research rotations and present seminars, take a prescribed set of core neuroscience courses, as well as choose from a wide variety of elective courses.
Project Director: R. Adron Harris, Ph.D.

Yale University

This predoctoral training program is being offered through a collaboration between the Department of Psychiatry in the Yale School of Medicine and the Health Policy and Administration Division at the Yale School of Public Health. By providing in-depth training, excellent mentoring and a rich, interdisciplinary research environment, we expect to produce the next generation of experts in addiction health economics, health services research, and policy analysis. The primary research focus is on illicit drugs, tobacco and HIV/AIDS as a critical comorbidity occurring with HIV/AIDS.  Trainees will produce research that is policy-oriented, population-based and addresses both prevention and treatment, with a goal of improving lives of addicted individuals and reducing the negative impact of addiction on society. 
Program Director:  Jodi Sindelar, Ph.D.  

Post-doctoral Training

Brown University, Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies

The Center provides postdoctoral training that prepares fellows to conduct high quality clinical and pre-clinical substance abuse research. Key research programs ongoing at the Center include laboratory studies of tobacco and marijuana use; behavioral and pharmacologic intervention studies with smokers and substance abusers; effects of prenatal exposure to substances; and studies of intervention mechanisms (using a range of methods including electronic diaries, cue reactivity, behavioral economics, genetic markers, and fMRI). Fellows will be trained in conjunction with an existing NIAAA postdoctoral research program; in this integrated training program, a total of 14 fellows participate in a structured didactic seminar series, supervised research experience, and an intensive mentored grantwriting process. The Center's primary research focus is the discovery of more effective treatments and early interventions for alcohol and drug abuse. More information can be found at: http://www.caas.brown.edu/Content/training/.
Program Director: Damaris J. Rohsenow, Ph.D.
Training Director: Suzanne M. Colby, Ph.D. 
Training Coordinator: Jayne Hawthorne 

Columbia University

Post-doctoral training program for physicians and psychologists interested in pursing research careers in substance abuse. The primary goal is to provide future research and academic psychiatrists and other clinicians with the research skills and clinical expertise to play substantive roles in advancing knowledge about the etiology and treatment of substance use disorders. Research fields include basic neuroscience, genetics, epidemiology, behavioral pharmacology, epidemiology, psychopharmacology, clinical trials and treatment research.
Program  Director: Frances Levin, M.D. 

Johns Hopkins University

The Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit (BPRU) offers diverse postdoctoral training in the human behavioral pharmacology of substance abuse and its treatment, with an emphasis on clinical trials. Areas of supervised research and publication training experience include: clinical trials of pharmacological and behavioral treatments, and their integration; incentive-based contingency management interventions; human laboratory studies of drug effects on behavior and cognition, drug self-administration, abuse liability assessment, and medications development. Drug categories under study include: opioids, cocaine/stimulants, sedative/anxiolytics, marijuana, psychedelics, alcohol, tobacco/nicotine, and caffeine. 
Project Website: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/psychiatry/research/BPRU/​
Program Director: George Bigelow, Ph.D. 

McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School, NeuroImaging Center

Post-doctoral training in the field of brain imaging and drug abuse is offered as an integrated, multidisciplinary program jointly supported by the McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School and Boston University School of Medicine. The primary goal is to provide trainees with skills in brain imaging technology (MRI, MRS, fMRI, EEG) and advanced psychopharmacology to be used in basic science and applied research projects that include: acute intoxicating effects of drugs, cue-induced craving, cognitive effects, withdrawal, sleep disturbances, medication compliance, treatment, medication development as well as translational research between animals and humans. Training includes both formal course work and laboratory rotations via one of four tracks: 1) MR Technology and Instrumentation Track; 2) Basic Clinical Research Track; 3) Clinical Treatment Track; and 4) Translational Research Track. 
Program Director: Scott E. Lukas, Ph.D. 
Send CV and statement of research interests to: Ronna J. Shostak, BPRL, McLean Hospital, 115 Mill St., Belmont, MA 02478, or email to  shostak@mclean.harvard.edu.

Mount Sinai School of Medicine

This is an interdisciplinary program that seeks to train researchers in the basic understanding and treatment of drug addiction. Our training faculty includes scientists and physicians engaged in both basic science and translational research. The research available to trainees in this program encompasses a wide variety of drugs of abuse (opioids, cannabinoids, cocaine, hallucinogens) as well as a full spectrum of research techniques including emerging techniques in genomics, proteomics, optogenetics and imaging, as well as approaches rooted in computational biology, structural biology, behavioral science, cell biology, molecular neuroanatomy, electrophysiology, molecular biology, functional magnetic resonance imaging and clinical research. Many of the faculty members have ongoing collaborations with each other, facilitating interdisciplinary work by trainees.
Project Website: http://www.mssm.edu/departments-and-institutes/pharmacology-and-systems-therapeutics/programs-and-training/postdoctoral-nida-training-in-pharmacology-of-drugs-of-abuse
Program Director: Lakshmi A. Devi, Ph.D. 

Stanford University School of Medicine

The Stanford Division of Pain Medicine Training Program in Pain and/or Substance Use Disorders is intended to develop postdoctoral trainees’ skills to become independent investigators in the fields of pain, substance abuse disorders, and their intersection.  The training program (1-3 years) incorporates required and elective coursework, mentored research experiences, an individual integrated research project, seminars, and exposure to professional development skills, including grant proposal and manuscript writing.  The aim of this program is to develop the next generation of academic leaders in pain and substance abuse disorder to ultimately better characterize these important conditions and translate discoveries into safe and effective treatments. Please visit snapl.stanford.edu/postdoc/ to apply.
Program Director: Sean Mackey, M.D., Ph.D. 

University of California, San Francisco

Postdoctoral program in drug abuse treatment and services research. Trainees work with a preceptor to design and implement studies on treatment of drug dependence, including nicotine dependence. Trainees also select a specific area of focus for independent research. Current research interests include trials of efficacy and effectiveness of psychosocial and pharmacologic treatment of drug abuse, including nicotine dependence; adoption of evidence-based practices in addiction treatment programs; instrument development in drug abuse; diagnostic techniques and research on treatment tailored for HIV positive drug abusers and drug abusers with psychiatric and medical disorders; research on provision of services to drug abusing populations; innovative methodology including internet based studies; and treatment of complex patients in innovative settings.
Program Director: James L. Sorensen, Ph.D. 

University of Michigan

This program offers post-doctoral training in the area of neurobiology and pharmacology of drugs of abuse, especially opioids and stimulants. The emphasis is on promoting scientific growth and acquiring conceptual and experimental tools key to understanding a) the basic biology of neurotransmitters and their receptors and the mechanisms of action of opiate drugs; and b) the molecular, cellular, interneuronal and behavioral processes critical to drug seeking, drug dependence and drug tolerance. This endeavor is carried out in an interdisciplinary context, with research ranging from gene regulation to primate behavior.
Project Website: http://sitemaker.umich.edu/bda/home
Program Director: John Traynor, Ph.D. 

University of Minnesota

The goal of this program is to provide translational training in comorbidity research spanning from Early Phase Clinical Trials to Community Based Participatory Research, and across populations and ethnic and cultural groups. The primary research focus is on Substance Use Disorders (SUD) co-occurring with psychiatric disorders (for example anxiety, ADHD, borderline, eating, depression, schizophrenia, and trauma).
Program Director: John Grabowski, Ph.D. 

University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

This interdisciplinary program trains postdoctoral fellows in the behavior and neurobiology of drug and alcohol abuse. Fellows will receive training in research and experimental design while participating in collaborative projects spanning at least two laboratories with different expertise and techniques. Training in translational investigation occurs in studies spanning molecular, animal, and human research. Scheduled activities provide career development, preparation for seeking an independent position, and training in the responsible conduct of research. 
Program Director: Charles France, Ph.D. 

Washington University

Multidisciplinary post-doctoral training program in drug abuse research with preceptors from the Departments of Psychiatry, and the Division of Biostatistics and Infectious Diseases. Research facilities include a renovated center for genetic and epidemiologic studies with access to inpatients and outpatients of Barnes Jewish, Bliss and Childrens Hospitals.
Project Director: Theodore J. Cicero, Ph.D. 

Yale University Department of Psychiatry

The central theme of the research in this post-doctoral program is the development and evaluation of innovative pharmacologic and behavioral treatments for substance abusers. Training can range in areas from molecular neurobiology and genetics to pharmacology and behavioral treatments, psychiatric epidemiology and health services research of drug abuse. This is a rich training environment, faculty with broad interests, many are world-renowned in their field. 
Program Director: Ismene Petrakis, M.D.

Yale University School of Medicine

Yale University has established a T32 program for interdisciplinary training in sciences related to neuroimaging. Neuroimaging technologies and applications today require a broad range of knowledge to establish and employ. The goal of this training program is to use its four postdoctoral training slots to cross-train basic scientists and physicians in technical, mathematical, biological, and administrative areas that are needed for modern neuroimaging studies.
Program Director: Graeme Mason, Ph.D. 

Yale University School of Medicine

This Postdoctoral Training Program in Substance Abuse Prevention Research is located within the Division of Prevention and Community Research and The Consultation Center, Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine. A combination of didactic, mentored, and independent research experiences over a two-year period is aimed at preparing future prevention scientists for careers as independent investigators with expertise in the development, implementation, and rigorous evaluation of science-based substance abuse prevention research. The program emphasizes three fundamental areas of learning: [1] conceptualization, design, and implementation of research within an ecological framework; [2] process of knowledge development and application in prevention science; and [3] research methodologies. Training includes state-of-the-art quantitative research methods and data analytic approaches, especially for the analysis of longitudinal research designs. Extensive training is also provided on the ethical conduct of research.
Project Website: http://www.theconsultationcenter.org/index.php?/post-doctoral.html
Program Director: Jacob K. Tebes, Ph.D. 

Pre- and Post-Doctoral Training

Brown University, The Miriam Hospital

This post-doctoral training program focuses on clinical research training in the areas of prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of HIV, Hepatitis B and C, and STDs among substance users. The goal is to train MDs and PhDs in prevention intervention research and interventions to improve treatment and access to therapy for HIV, Hepatitis, TB, and STDs among "hard to reach" populations. 
Project Director: Timothy P. Flanigan, M.D.
 Jennifer Hyde 

Columbia University

The Substance Abuse Epidemiology Training Program at Columbia University trains individuals from different disciplines for careers and leadership in substance abuse epidemiology. We train pre- and post-doctoral fellows to use epidemiologic methods to understand the onset, course, and consequences of substance abuse, and to transform such understanding into actions that mitigate the toll substance abuse takes on individuals and on society. We emphasize a multi-level, cells-to-society approach and our training goals include gaining knowledge about substance abuse epidemiology and related areas, building a set of methodological skills, presenting findings in professional settings, and becoming trained in the responsible conduct of research.
Program Director: Deborah Hasin, Ph.D. 

Columbia University School of Social Work

The goal of this interdisciplinary program is to train the next generation of pre- and post-doctoral scholars in the prevention, treatment, and care of HIV and drug abuse among individuals in the criminal justice system. Participating faculty mentors are leaders in HIV, drug abuse, and criminal justice fields, with strong track records of support from NIDA and NIMH and other institutes. Each year, the training program will select and appoint pre-doctoral trainees who will be supported for up to 5 years, and 2 postdoctoral fellows, who will be supported for up to 3 years. 
Program Director: Nabila El-Bassel, Ph.D. 

Dartmouth College

This is a unique training program in a developing area of transdisciplinary research, co-occurring substance use and other mental disorders (COD). This program provides research opportunities to graduate students and postdocs in social, behavioral, and neurobiological mechanisms; treatment development (psychosocial and pharmacological); technology-assisted treatment and dissemination; and health services practices and implementation. The goal is to equip trainees with broad areas of expertise and a commitment to multidisciplinary approaches to their questions of interest.
Program Director: Alan Budney, Ph.D. 

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

The primary goal of this new training program is to increase the number and quality of quantitatively adept scientists who, after training, will conduct population field studies and other epidemiologic research on drug dependence and on related hazards associated with illicit drug use.
Project Director: Debra Furr-Holden, Ph.D. 

Public Health Solutions

This training program is designed to prepare social scientists for careers in research on drug abuse and HIV/AIDS. Training activities at National Development and Research Institutes (NDRI) emphasize: advanced courses in drug abuse theory and research methods and in substantive issues related to AIDS, crime, and other drug related topics. Fellows attend appropriate doctoral level courses at Columbia University, School of Public Health or other New York area universities.
Program Director: Gregory Falkin, Ph.D.

Medical University of South Carolina

Pre-doctoral and post-doctoral training for individuals who are interested in a multidisciplinary basic science and/or clinical approach to drug abuse issues. Our expertise is in translating research on the mechanisms of drug seeking behavior and its molecular/cellular substrates into pharmacotherapies for drug addiction. This site is the home of the Neurobiology of Addiction Research Center (Peter Kalivas-PI) and a Specialized Center of Research in Addiction (Kathleen Brady-PI). See http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/psychiatry/research/cns/artc/Programs.index.html
Program Director: Jacqueline F. McGinty, Ph.D. 

Michigan State University College of Human Medicine

This is an epidemiological research training program for graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and summer research apprentices. The scientific focus is on drug dependence epidemiology and intervention research, with a multi-level population and ecological perspective. We pose research questions under five main rubrics of substantive epidemiology, as well as methodological research questions, and we seek increasingly definitive answers to questions of public health significance. The program provides talented investigators with opportunities to join ongoing NIDA-funded research projects and to design their own experiments, based on theories and research approaches of epidemiology and biostatistics, as well as the life-span developmental sciences, econometrics, and systems analysis.
Program Website: http://www.epi.msu.edu/nida/
Program Director: James C. Anthony, Ph.D.

Oregon Health & Science University

This program (http://www.ohsu.edu/xd/education/schools/school-of-medicine/departments/basic-science-departments/behn/grants/nida/index.cfm) will train specialists to conduct preclinical research ranging from the molecular to the behavioral level on the biological mechanisms underlying the development, maintenance, and elimination of drug-seeking behavior. Thirty-one faculty will serve as preceptors for trainees at the cellular/molecular level, using molecular biological, electrophysiological, and fluorescence and electron microscopic techniques; at the level of physiological, biochemical, and pharmacological systems, using receptor binding, autoradiography, in vivo microdialysis and voltammetry, in vitro perfusion, and electrophysiological techniques; in pharmacogenetics and behavioral pharmacology, using behavioral testing, intravenous drug self-administration, quantitative genetics, and genetic mapping techniques; and at the cognitive/human/clinical level, using behavioral tests, EEG, fMRI and diffusion tensor imaging, and PET scanning.
Program Director: Kim Neve, Ph.D. 

Pennsylvania State University

This training program focuses on the interface of prevention research and methodology. The goal is train researchers in the development and application of cutting-edge research methods in the design and evaluation of substance abuse" and comorbid prevention programs for children, youth, families, and communities. The training program will develop researchers who: (1) are knowledgeable about the central principles and models of prevention science, (2) can utilize sophisticated modeling techniques for longitudinal data, and (3) have the capacity to translate these skills into development and refinement of strategies to improve the lives of young people. The program combines the strengths of the Prevention Research Center and The Methodology Centers to provides a high-quality, interdisciplinary training environment. More information can be found at http://methodology.psu.edu/pamt/.
Program Director: Mark Greenberg, Ph.D. 

Public Health Solutions

This training program prepares social scientists for careers in research on drug abuse and HIV/AIDS through intensive training—fellows participate in seminars and workshops all day on Mondays—and hands on research on NIDA grants. The program comprises 16 fellows (9 predocs and 7 postdocs) from the various behavioral disciplines and includes both qualitative and quantitative researchers working in a mutually supportive milieu to conduct research, build their publication records and write grants for outside funding. Fellows specialize in a wide range of topics (e.g., drugs among college students, doping in sports, drugs and crime, HIV risk factors and interventions, drug treatment, politics and drug policy, international research). The Behavioral Sciences Training in Drug Abuse Research (BST) program is a collaborative effort of Public Health Solutions (the grantee), National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. (the training site), NIDA’s Center for Drug Use and HIV Research (at NYU), and Columbia University.
Program Director: Gregory Falkin, Ph.D. 

Temple University School of Medicine

This program provides interdisciplinary training in several areas of drug abuse research including behavioral, cellular, and molecular pharmacology, neuroscience, and immunology. Our current research emphasis is on investigating the effects of opioids, cocaine, cannabinoids, and nicotine on behavior and on the brain and immune system. Training of predoctoral and postdoctoral fellows from the Departments of Pharmacology, Microbiology and Immunology, Psychology, Biochemistry, and Physiology is provided, with experienced drug abuse researchers in each department to serve as mentors. This program provides the trainees with the opportunity to learn a variety of research skills in a collaborative and supportive atmosphere, and helps prepare them for independent careers in academia, industry, or government. Temple University has a large, active Center for Substance Abuse Research which supports research efforts on drugs of abuse and addiction. Detailed research program descriptions can be found on our web sites, Center for Substance Abuse Research and www.temple.edu/medicine
Program Director: Ellen Unterwald, Ph.D. 

University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

This unique training program is in an emerging area—translational research in addiction. Trainee research opportunities will include, among many others, laboratory studies of antibody-based therapy for methamphetamine abuse, studies of the behavioral economics of addiction, novel medications to treat cocaine and opiate dependence, behavioral treatments of marijuana dependence, behavioral and neural mechanisms of change, treatment service dissemination, and cost effectiveness of reducing drug treatment barriers. The project will train addiction scientists to participate in translational science that directly assesses the clinical relevance of basic research; conduct scientific analyses of basic processes underlying drug abuse; help develop and assess behavioral and pharmacological treatments of addiction; determine approaches to integrate these findings into clinical practice; and identify policies that support integration. Scientists trained in translational research will be at the crossroads of basic and clinical research, where they can provide a crucial pathway between these two domains.
Program Director: Clinton Kilts, Ph.D. 

University of California, Los Angeles

The UCLA Drug Abuse Research Training Center has provided training in drug abuse research to pre and post-doctoral fellows since its inception in 1991. This program will continue to include trainees at all levels of experience, including MDs. The objectives of the DARTC program are to provide intensive, comprehensive, integrated, interdisciplinary research training to an ethnically and experientially diverse group of trainees. In addition, trainees have access to large populations using every drug of abuse, from all racial and cultural backgrounds and from varied socioeconomic levels, set amid urban, suburban, and rural communities. The curriculum covers virtually every area of drug abuse research, including epidemiology, etiology, pharmacology, neurobiology, HIV/AIDS, the natural history of use/dependence, and the development and evaluation of pharmacological and behavioral interventions.
Program Director: Christine Grella, Ph.D. 

University of California Los Angeles

This Translational Neuroscience of Drug Addiction (TNDA) Program trains both graduate students and postdocs in the participating UCLA programs and departments: Brain Research Institute; Department of Psychology, Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology. Postdocs may in addition be trained in the UCLA Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior. This program provides hands-on experience at all stages of addiction research, including evidence-based hypothesis formation, experimental design, data acquisition and analyses, and preparing findings for oral and written presentation, laying the groundwork for success in securing funding to pursue independent research. TNDA trainees have a primary project in a specific mentor's laboratory, but gain exposure to other areas of research through laboratory rotations, common core training, as well as by formal and informal interaction among TNDA faculty and leadership, necessary to acquire the breadth of knowledge needed to conduct translational research in drug addiction.
Program Director: Edythe London, Ph.D. 

University of California, San Diego

This is an interdisciplinary, clinical postdoctoral training program that focuses on the combined effects of substance abuse and HIV infection on brain structure and function. This program emphasizes research training in three primary, interrelated CNS outcomes of HIV-infected substance abusers: (1) neurocognitive impairment (e.g., decision-making, memory); (2) everyday functioning (e.g., medication adherence, vocational outcomes); and (3) structural and functional neuroimaging (e.g., diffusion tensor imaging). Students and fellows will be actively engaged in individualized, flexible career development plans that will include applied research training, didactics (e.g., formal class work and structured seminars), and targeted clinical experiences. 
Program Director: Robert Heaton, Ph.D. 

University of California San Diego

The University of California San Diego and San Diego State University co-sponsor a T32 program focused on prevention of HIV and related infections/co-morbidities among substance users that aims to train the next generation of behavioral researchers in public health disciplines (e.g. epidemiology, psychology, global health, public health law, health behavior). The program currently has 3 predoctoral and 3 postdoctoral training slots.  Participating faculty mentors have expertise in mixed methods, design and analysis of structural interventions, and GIS. A unique feature of this program is the opportunity to engage in hands-on training in international drug abuse research, as several of the faculty have active research programs in the Mexico-US border region.  Faculty have active research projects in 15 countries.  This T32, funded since 2007, has helped 13 fellows obtain K01 awards.
Program Website: http://gph.ucsd.edu
Program Director: Steffanie Strathdee, Ph.D. 

University of Colorado - Boulder

The pre- and postdoctoral programs at the Institute for Behavioral Genetics (IBG) provide training in the development and use of genetic strategies to study behavior, in general, and substance abuse in particular. Predoctoral students receive didactic training in molecular genetics, quantitative genetics, and behavioral genetics. All IBG predoctoral trainees are also graduate students in regular academic departments of the University of Colorado (e.g. Psychology and Neuroscience, Integrated Physiology, Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology) and must, as a result, take the coursework required by the relevant academic department to complete the Ph.D. Both pre- and postdoctoral trainees will participate actively in drug abuse-related projects directed by IBG's faculty. This research ranges from animal model to human studies.
Program Director: John K. Hewitt, Ph.D.

University of Florida

This is a program for graduate students and postdocs to be trained in the epidemiology and prevention of substance use and its consequences and co-morbidities, with a focus on social determinants of health and health inequalities, and the development of behavioral interventions to reduce substance use and its harmful consequences. Trainees will work on projects that address the individual level (behavioral interventions) to the population level (exposure and consequences of addiction) to eliminate health inequalities related to substance use and its consequences; and will master skills to critically evaluate data, conduct multiple aspects of addiction research and become successful, and independent investigators who contribute to the field.
Program Director: Linda Cottler, Ph.D.  

University of Kentucky

This is an interdisciplinary program involving 14 faculty from a variety of departments including Anatomy and Neurobiology, Behavioral Science, Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry, Pharmacy, and Psychology whose objective is to prepare predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees for a career in drug abuse research. There is a rich tradition of drug abuse research at the University of Kentucky that currently includes a Center on Drug and Alcohol Research and a Center for Drug Abuse Research Translation. This program provides broad-based training in modern concepts of drug abuse research with an emphasis on studies of receptors involved in drugs of abuse, the development of ligands which interact with these receptors, enzymes that regulate opioid peptide action, and neuroAIDS. The focus of the training program is on the use of a spectrum of state-of-the-art methodological approaches such as structural biology, proteomics, molecular modeling, and microarray technology in conjunction with molecular biology, pharmacology and basic neuroscience to explore the mechanisms that are the foundation of drug abuse research.
Program Director: Linda P. Dwoskin, Ph.D. 

University of Kentucky, College of Medicine

Predoctoral and postdoctoral training program in health and drug abuse research that spans preclinical and clinical methodologies to community level interventions. Those selected for the program will be trained to solve research problems in interdisciplinary teams. The training faculty serve as models of multidisciplinary collaboration in the disciplines of psychology, pharmacology, sociology, neuroanatomy, nursing, psychiatry, public health, and communications. Their research is carried out in the laboratories, clinic research wards, community treatment centers, criminal justice settings, and residential research facilities.
Program Director: Craig R. Rush, Ph.D. 

University of Michigan

This training program puts into practice the cutting-edge concepts of interdisciplinary and translational research at the intersection of behavioral, epidemiological, and neurobiological investigation of substance abuse. Trainees are exposed to a critical analysis of extant research on substance abuse through pro-seminars, interdisciplinary speakers and discussion groups. Trainees are expected to write for and present to multidisciplinary audiences as well as develop research competencies in their respective disciplines. Trainees will work with two faculty mentors, one mentor from the trainee's discipline and the other mentor from a complementary discipline.
Program Director: Margaret Gnegy, Ph.D. 

University of Minnesota (PharmacoNeuroImmunology)

The PharmacoNeuroImmunology (PNI) program http://www.ahc.umn.edu/pni/ is an interdisciplinary training program that focuses on the intersections of drugs of abuse with the nervous and immune systems, and integrates our understanding of these physiological interactions with their behavioral counterparts, including the role of the drugs of abuse as co-factors in HIV/AIDS. The faculty trainers have extensive experience as mentors and are committed to training predoctoral students and postdoctoral fellows in this interdisciplinary setting.
Program Director: Thomas Molitor, Ph.D. 
Program Co-Director: Sabita Roy, Ph.D. 

University of Minnesota

Understanding the neurobiological processes underlying conditions that lead to use of addictive drugs (pain and reward systems) as well as the expression of receptors upon which drugs act, are fundamental to developing treatments for addiction, and perhaps more importantly, the discovery of new therapeutic agents that combat addiction. The goal of this program is to provide research training within Neuroscience, with a focus on cellular and systems approaches to fundamental problems of substance abuse. The program has significant research and training strengths in the areas of addictive disease, development, motor systems, neurodegenerative disease, pain, plasticity and vision. This is a highly collaborative, multidisciplinary program as reflected by primary faculty mentor appointments in 6 departments across 4 colleges. This has been a highly successful training program, evident in the high retention of our trainees in careers in education and research within academia and industry.
Program Director: Virginia Seybold, Ph.D. 

University of Pennsylvania

This is a translational training program for graduate students and postdocs, integrating training in both clinical and basic research. Each trainee will have both a clinical and preclinical mentor, and will be able to focus on projects that may range from molecular and genetic studies, to brain systems (neuroscience and neuroimaging), to clinical treatment trials, and drug policy. The research may take place at any of a number of affiliated academic research centers, laboratories, and treatment settings, critical for translating new research findings into the “real world.”
Program Director: Anna Rose Childress, Ph.D.  

University of Pittsburgh

This program trains postdocs and graduate students at the dissertation stage on the neurobiology of substance use and abuse. Core areas of training include: 1) Systems neurobiology of motivated behavior and cognition; 2) Adolescent developmental biology and substance use vulnerability; 3) Molecular modulation of neurotransmitter release and reuptake; 4) Nicotine reinforcement and relapse; and 5) Stress responsive brain circuits. Extensive training in grant writing, presentation and analysis, and other critical skills necessary for success as independent investigators will be provided.
Program Director: Charles Bradberry, Ph.D. 

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston

This program provides both pre- and postdoctoral training in the behavioral and biochemical mechanisms of actions of drugs of abuse, especially psychomotor stimulants, opiates and phencyclidine. Anatomic, behavioral, biochemical, cellular and genetic approaches are used. Students, as well as the training faculty, come from graduate programs in pharmacology and toxicology, neuroscience, cell biology, biochemistry and molecular biology. Training is facilitated by resources made available through the Center for Addiction Research (see http://www.utmb.edu/addiction/).
Program Director: Kathryn Cunningham, Ph.D. 

The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas

Our program offers research training in diverse areas of neuroscience directly relevant to drug abuse and addiction. A distinguishing feature of the program is its multidisciplinary orientation. There is ongoing research at the level of molecular biology, genetics, cellular physiology, neuroanatomy, neuropharmacology, and behavioral neuroscience, and most trainees carry out research that spans several of these various disciplines. Trainees also benefit from the outstanding biomedical research community at UT Southwestern.
Program Director: Amelia J. Eisch, Ph.D. 

University of Vermont

This training program focuses on the behavioral economics and behavioral pharmacology of addiction, with a special focus on vulnerable populations and health disparities. Trainees have opportunities to gain research experience with a wide range of NIH-supported behavioral, neurobiological, and pharmacological human laboratory and treatment outcome research, and to gain unique training in tobacco regulatory science.  This training program is integrated with the University of Vermont’s Tobacco Center of Regulatory Science and the Vermont Center on Behavior and Health (http://www.uvm.edu/medicine/behaviorandhealth/), a trans-disciplinary center dedicated to researching the impact of substance use and other health risk behaviors on chronic disease and premature death.
Program Director: Stephen T. Higgins, Ph.D. 

University of Washington

The unique strength of this faculty group is their expertise in the molecular pharmacology of signal transduction mechanisms likely to be affected by drugs of abuse. Previous research by this group includes 1) studies of the effects of opioids, phencyclidine, and cannabinoids on ion channel function, 2) the structure and biochemical properties of channels and enzymes known to be regulated by drugs of abuse, and 3) the effects of chronic exposure of opiates on the properties of specific neurons in the mammalian brain.
Program Director: Charles Chavkin, Ph.D.  

Virginia Commonwealth University

The principal objective of this training program (https://pharmtox.vcu.edu/) is to prepare pre-doctoral and post-doctoral students for academic careers as independent scientists in the area of drug abuse research. Pre-doctoral students may enter the drug abuse training program after completing at least one year in the graduate program of the department. They will have had courses in biochemistry, physiology and general pharmacology and will have been exposed to research in at least four different laboratories by the time that they enter the drug abuse training program.
Project Director: William Dewey, Ph.D. 

Washington University, George Warren Brown School of Social Work

The Transdisciplinary Training in Addictions Research (TranSTAR) predoctoral and postdoctoral training program focuses on research on services to, treatment of, and policies affecting populations vulnerable to substance use disorders and co-occurring and comorbid conditions.  Trainees benefit from our program's affiliation with several NIH and CDC supported centers and research-related resources and initiatives at the Brown School, School of Medicine, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and across the University.  TranSTAR aims to produce a cadre of well-trained addictions researchers, with state-of-the-art knowledge of addictions services, delivered in non-specialty settings, and particularly targeted to underserved, vulnerable populations. TranSTAR emphasizes the importance of understanding protective and modifiable risk factors and co-occurring and comorbid conditions that “inform, influence, and interact” with drug use, abuse, dependence and addictive behaviors.  The program prepares trainees for academic research placements in tenure track or postdoctoral fellowship positions.
Program Co-Director: Renee M. Cunningham-Williams, Ph.D., MPE, LCSW 


This page was last updated September 2015

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