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NIDA Director, Dr. Nora D. Volkow

Nora D. Volkow, M.D., became Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) at the National Institutes of Health in May 2003. NIDA supports most of the world’s research on the health aspects of drug abuse and addiction.

Dr. Volkow’s work has been instrumental in demonstrating that drug addiction is a disease of the human brain. As a research psychiatrist and scientist, Dr. Volkow pioneered the use of brain imaging to investigate the toxic effects and addictive properties of abusable drugs. Her studies have documented changes in the dopamine system affecting, among others, the functions of frontal brain regions involved with motivation, drive, and pleasure in addiction.  She has also made important contributions to the neurobiology of obesity, ADHD, and aging. Read more.

Cover of Nature issue  on Addiction

Read about the latest advances in addiction research in Nature Outlook: Addiction, a special supplement co-sponsored by NIDA and NIAAA. View the entire supplement at: http://www.nature.com/nature/outlook/addiction/. For a commentary authored by NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow and NIAAA Director Dr. George F. Koob, go to http://www.nature.com/nature/outlook/addiction/
pdf/NIDA_NIH.pdf (PDF,108KB)
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Cover of Lancet journal

The brain disease model of addiction is strongly supported by scientific evidence, according to a commentary - “Brain disease model of addiction: why is it so controversial?” , published in The Lancet Psychiatry by NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow and NIAAA Director Dr. George Koob.

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Dr. Nora Volkow: Video Highlights

NIDA Director, Dr. Nora D. Volkow Videos

  • APA TV, May 2016
    APA TV chats with Dr. Nora Volkow, the Director of NIDA to hear about her lecture on drug abuse and the opioid epidemic.
  • Kentucky Educational Television, May 2016
    One to One with Bill Goodman: Dr. Nora Volkow
  • TEDMED, January 2015
    Why do our brains get addicted?
  • The World Science Festival, May 2013
    Meet Pioneer in Science, Dr. Nora Volkow
  • Rockburn Presents, November 2012
    Dr. Nora Volkow
  • Brookhaven National Laboratory WBNL Video, October 2012
    Chemistry celebration: FDG: Contribution to Our Understanding of Addiction
  • CBS 60 Minutes, April 2012
    Hooked: Why Bad Habits Are Hard to Break 
  • Science Times, June 2011
    Dr. Nora Volkow

Interviews with NIDA Scientists

2011 Society for Neuroscience meeting

NIDA scientists and grantees bring brain science to life in these video interviews conducted at NIDA's 2011 Frontiers in Science mini convention at the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Washington, D.C.