NIDA International Program Introduces New Web Site
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) International Program recently unveiled its redesigned Web site with new features for more direct access to information essential to the international drug abuse research community.
The redesigned site features navigation that makes it easier to find information on NIDA International Program funding opportunities, fellowships, tools, and information, with news and announcements now featured prominently on the site's home page. A new keyword feature allows for faster access to information by topic area. Web site visitors are encouraged to use the new "share" button to share information found on the site with their social media networks including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and StumbleUpon.
Visit international.drugabuse.gov to:
Explore fellowship opportunities.
Connect with international drug abuse researchers.
Access free online training tools.
Search the international research abstract database.
Read past issues of the NIDA International E-News.
View the Methadone Research Web Guide.
NIDA Supports Poster Session at Annual Prevention Research Meeting
The Society for Prevention Research (SPR) recently welcomed scientists and experts from around the world to explore prevention science from a global health perspective with the intent of fostering worldwide rapid development of evidence-based policies, strategies, and programs.
The annual meeting, which marked the 20th anniversary of SPR, centered on the theme, “Prevention Scientists Promoting Global Health: Emerging Visions for Today and Tomorrow.” One of the first events of the conference was the International Poster Session, now in its fourth year. The session, cosponsored by the NIDA International Program and Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research (DESPR) as well as the National Cancer Institute, is a popular event among early career researchers, with more than 25 scientists presenting their research. SPR president Linda M. Collins, Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University, welcomed everyone to the poster session and encouraged participants to take advantage of the great opportunity to network and learn about drug abuse prevention research around the world. DESPR director Wilson M. Compton, M.D., M.P.E., and International Program director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., noted the importance of international research collaboration in promoting global health, an important priority within the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Gust applauded the decision to focus the 2011 SPR meeting on international research.
NIDA also provided travel awards for 13 researchers who presented the results of drug abuse prevention research completed in international settings, including the following:
Josipa Basic, Ph.D., University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croatia
Meen Poudyal Chhetri, Ph.D., Disaster Preparedness Network-Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal
Helga S. Fridjonsdottir, Ph.D., University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland
Fabrizia Giannotta, Ph.D., Orebro University, Orebro, Sweden
Olga Levina, NGO “Stellit,” St. Petersburg, Russia
Gustavo Martinez, M.D., Salud y Desarollo Comunitario de Ciudad Juarez, Juarez, Mexico
Boladale M. Mapayi, MBChB, Obafemi Awolowo University, Osun, Nigeria
Carmen Orte, Universitat Illes Balears, Palma, Spain
Zila M. Sanchez, Ph.D., Universidade Federal de Brazil, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Eva Skarstrand, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden
Tasanai Vongchak, Research Institute for Health Sciences, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand
Trecia A. Wouldes, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Matthew M. Young, Ph.D., Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse, Ottawa, Canada
Eve E. Reider, Ph.D., NIDA Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research (right), talks with Eva Skarstrand, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden, during the SPR International Poster Session.
The SPR program included speakers for three plenary sessions focused on large-scale prevention practices, policies, and programs; preventing violence against children; and strategic efforts to eliminate severe poverty. An array of symposiums and invited sessions rounded out the meeting, offering both seasoned scientists and early investigators a diverse array of events to encourage collaboration in prevention science.
Now in its third year, the International Networking Forum at SPR, composed of international scientists, policymakers, and community representatives, gathered to share knowledge and information about prevention strategies and support ongoing networking and collaboration through the year. Brenda Miller, Ph.D., Prevention Research Center, Berkeley, California, chaired the Forum. Participants discussed progress of the International Task Force to help involve more international colleagues in SPR prevention research-related activities as well as issues particularly relevant to the international community.
Of particular interest to early career researchers were two sessions that explored the how-tos of forming and maintaining international collaborations. The first of the two sessions was chaired by Marie-Héléne Véronneau, Ph.D., University of Oregon, and Kerry Green, Ph.D., University of Maryland. The presenters discussed the preliminary steps in preparing for international work, initiating collaborations, keys to success, and common pitfalls. The second session was a roundtable chaired by Susannah Allison, Ph.D., National Institute of Mental Health, and Jacqueline Lloyd, Ph.D., NIDA. The session highlighted successful international collaborations that have conducted HIV prevention research with diverse populations around the globe.
Meeting Held To Discuss Current Science in Addiction Medicine
The 42nd American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) annual meeting, held this past April, gathered addiction researchers, providers, and professionals to exchange ideas and information and explore new and innovative science-based addiction treatment models. NIDA International Program director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., joined his colleagues to participate in two symposiums. The first addressed innovative models of addiction treatment from the international context. The discussion centered on studies in Brazil, India, and the Netherlands, offering an appreciation for the breadth of alternative and innovative approaches being developed for addiction treatment.
The second symposium, focused on marijuana and the public, was designed to present an overview of research, clinical data, and perspectives relevant to cannabis use and abuse, particularly in the context of evolving public perceptions and policies related to marijuana. Dr. Gust presented prevalence statistics on marijuana and participated in the dialogue about the clinical consequences and sequelae of cannabis use and the diverse viewpoints on the topic.
New Journal Supplement Addresses Volatile Substance Misuse
A new supplement to Substance Use & Misuse addresses volatile substance misuse (VSM). Supported by the NIDA International Program, this special issue addresses the public health aspects of VSM, the inhalation of gases or vapors for psychoactive effects, assessing the similarities and differences in the products misused, patterns, prevalence, etiologies, and impacts of VSM. In 20 peer-reviewed articles, authors from 12 countries examine these issues through sociocultural epidemiology, neuroscience, and interventions research. The Australian, Canadian, and U.S. guest editors of the supplement contend that, when compared with other drugs used at a similar prevalence, VSM has attracted relatively little research effort. The authors and editors call for further research to develop evidence-based policies and comprehensive interventions that respect culture and context-specific knowledge. Learn more about the complete supplement, Substance Use & Misuse, Volume 46, Number s1 (2011).
NIDA/Fogarty Research Sheds Light on Addiction
Three scientists are working to get to the roots of addiction through support from NIDA and the Fogarty International Center (FIC). The scientists and their work, highlighted in FIC’s recent newsletter, illustrate the true intent of the NIDA/FIC collaboration to nurture global research exchange and bring about a greater understanding of drug abuse and addiction worldwide. Highlights of the scientists’ research are described below:
Mustafa al’Absi, Ph.D., University of Minnesota-Duluth, began studying the neurobehavioral effects of khat use (an amphetamine-like stimulant derived from a shrub) in his native country, Yemen, with support from a Fogarty International Research Collaboration Award (FIRCA). The award stimulated research exchange between Minnesota and Yemen researchers, allowing Dr. al’Absi to parlay that project into a larger NIDA-funded grant that focuses on both social-behavioral studies and infectious disease studies.
Deborah Yurgelun-Todd, Ph.D., has been studying the effects of cannabis and methamphetamine abuse on the adolescent brain and how this may contribute to the spread of HIV/AIDS. Wanting to see whether some of the hypotheses she and her colleagues found would hold true in different populations, she applied for and was awarded a NIDA-supported FIC Brain Disorders in the Developing World: Research Across the Lifespan grant to study adolescents in South Africa.
Jasmin Vassileva, Ph.D., University of Illinois at Chicago, is investigating the effects of antisocial and psychopathic tendencies on decision making and other cognitive functions in heroin addicts. In contrast to many heroin addicts in Chicago who are also addicted to crack cocaine, heroin users in Bulgaria are typically single substance abusers, making them ideal to study. Dr. Vassileva also received a Fogarty Brain Disorders in the Developing World grant.
Read more about each of these researchers and their work in the March/April 2011 issue of FIC’s Global Health Matters. More information about the research grants is available on the NIDA International Program Web site under Research Funding.
International Program Announcements Funded Four New Projects in 2010
Last year, NIDA funded four new projects through its Program Announcements (PA) for International Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction Research. The PAs solicit applications involving research partnerships between NIDA grantees at U.S. institutions and their partners in other countries. Three R01 Research Grant Proposals and one R21 Exploratory/Development Research Grant were funded:
- Marek C. Chawarski, Ph.D., Yale University, and Wang Zhou, M.D., Ph.D., Wuhan Centers for Disease Control and Tongji Medical College, China, will compare three types of behavioral treatments in combination with methadone maintenance therapy (MMT) to determine which treatment works best to help heroin-dependent injection drug users enrolled in MMT to stop using drugs, adhere to methadone, and reduce HIV risk behaviors.
- Robert E. Booth, Ph.D., University of Colorado Denver, and Sergii Dvoriak, M.D., Ph.D., Ukrainian Institute on Public Health Policy, will conduct randomized clinical trials in three Ukrainian regions to compare the effectiveness of two interventions in reducing the risk of HIV acquisition and transmission among injecting drug users.
- Kimberly C. Brouwer, Ph.D., University of California, San Diego, and María Remedios Lozada Romero, M.D., Pro-Comusida, Mexico, will investigate the continually evolving risk environments for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections among female sex workers on the U.S.–Mexican border, including perceptions of violence and access to drug abuse prevention and treatment and health care services.
- Donnal L. Gruol, Ph.D., Scripps Research Institute, and Lars Terenius, Ph.D., Karolinska Institute, Sweden, will use mouse models and a new approach to study brain receptor dynamics, fluorescence correlation spectroscopy, integrated with confocal laser scanning microscopy to analyze mu-opioid receptor variants that may have consequences for opioid analgesia and drug addiction in humans.
To find more information about the International Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction Research Program Announcement, visit www.drugabuse.gov/research-funding/funding-sources/nida-international-program-announcements.
Nominations Sought for Social Work Doctoral Dissertation Award in Addictions
The Journal of Social Work Practice in Addictions and its founding editor, Shulamith Lala Ashenberg Straussner, D.S.W., LCSW, BCD, New York University, are seeking faculty nominations for its Best Social Work Doctoral Dissertation Award in Addictions for 2010–2011. Submissions must include:
Student's name, institution, and contact information
Title of dissertation
Date of defense (must be between July 2010–July 2011)
Faculty sponsor's name, affiliation, and contact information
A brief paragraph describing why this dissertation is important
The winner will be recognized at the October 2011 Annual Program Meeting of Council on Social Work Education in Atlanta, Georgia. Nominations should be emailed to Dr. Straussner no later than August 1, 2011. Read the current issues of the journal for more details.
Call for Applications: Bioethics Training Partnership for African Institutions
The Johns Hopkins-Fogarty African Bioethics Training Program (FABTP) seeks applications from eligible African institutions for a funded collaborative partnership in international research ethics. The goal of the training partnership is to enhance research ethics capacity within the selected African institution. Applicant institutions must meet institutional eligibility requirements. The training partnership will occur over a 12-month period beginning October 2011, with opportunities for continued collaboration thereafter. The program will support the capacity development of one African institution per year. Trainees will receive a certificate from the Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics after they have completed the program.
For more information about the training partnership, eligibility requirements, and application processes, visit FABTP or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with specific questions. The application deadline is July 15, 2011.
2011 Young Scholars Award Deadline Approaches
The International Society of Addiction Journal Editors (ISAJE) and the World Health Organization (WHO) are accepting applications for the 2011 ISAJE/WHO Young Scholars Award.
The award recognizes the contributions to addiction science of young scholars from low- and middle-income countries and is given for the best paper published by a young scholar on any topic related to addiction within the last 3 years. The winner will receive a certificate and financial support to attend an international scientific or clinical meeting in the addiction or substance abuse field, to be chosen by the winner in consultation with the award committee.
The 2010 ISAJE/WHO Young Scholars Award recipient was Zhen-Yu Ren, M.D., Ph.D., a researcher from Beijing, China, for her paper, "Abnormal Pain Response in Pain-Sensitive Opiate Addicts After Prolonged Abstinence Predicts Increased Drug Craving," published in Psychopharmacology. The runner-up was Li-Yan Zhao, M.D., also from China, for her paper, "Stress Enhances Retrieval of Drug-Related Memories in Abstinent Heroin Addicts," published in Neuropsychopharmacology.
The deadline for receiving applications is July 31, 2011. Further details including the full eligibility criteria and application procedure may be obtained from the ISAJE Executive Officer, 4 Windsor Walk, London SE5 8AF, United Kingdom (email: email@example.com).
HIV and Drug Use Funding Opportunity
NIDA intends to commit $4 million to fund 8 to 10 awards in fiscal year 2012 to support implementation science projects that will inform the President’s Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). NIDA, through its announcement, HIV/AIDS Implementation Science Targeting Drug Using Populations: A Collaboration With PEPFAR, seeks to develop more efficient and cost-effective methods to deliver HIV prevention, treatment, and care for drug-using populations.
Letters of Intent Due: July 1, 2011
Applications Due: August 1, 2011
Opportunities To Conduct Research in Australia
The Australian Government is offering awards to promote knowledge, education links, and enduring ties between Australia and its neighbors through the country’s extensive scholarship programs. The Endeavor Award is an internationally competitive, merit-based scholarship program providing opportunities for citizens of the Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe, and Middle East to undertake study, research, and professional development in Australia. Awards are available for postgraduate or postdoctoral fellows or midcareer professionals interested in enhancing their professional development. Awards are also available for Australians to study abroad. The application deadline is June 20, 2011. Learn more about the Endeavor Award and eligibility at the Australia Awards Web site.
Former Fellow Organizes Drug Policy Forum in Uruguay
Gabriela (Gabby) Olivera, Uruguay, former NIDA Hubert H. Humphrey Drug Abuse Research Fellow, organized and hosted a drug policy forum in Montevideo, Uruguay, in May.
Ms. Olivera, whose work focuses on violence and other gender issues that influence women’s abuse of prescription drugs and alcohol, organized the program to bring researchers, policymakers, and experts together to discuss advances and challenges in drug policy. Thomas F. Babor, Ph.D., M.P.H., chaired a session on drug policy and the public good. He discussed multinational, interdisciplinary evidence-based drug policy designed to make scientific evidence relevant to policymakers and build the case for including public health as a priority in all drug policies.
The NIDA International Program supported travel for Dace Svikis, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University, who discussed the rationale for designing specific gender programs and interventions, and effective treatment programs for women, pregnant women, and their children.
Ms. Olivera considers the Forum one step in the efforts to ensure continued collaborative international research involving the United States and Uruguay.
Participants at the May 2011 Forum, Advances and Challenges in Drug Policy and the Public Good in Montevideo, Uruguay.
NIDA Announces Another INVEST Award
Hongqiang Sun, M.D., Ph.D., China, has been selected to receive a 2010–2011 NIDA International Visiting Scientists and Technical Exchange Program (INVEST) Drug Abuse Research Fellowship. He will be working with mentor Thomas R. Kosten, M.D., at the Baylor College of Medicine and DeBakey Veterans Administration Medical Center in Houston, Texas, to investigate the effectiveness of pharmaceutical interventions for smoking cessation.
As a 2010 WHO/NIDA/College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) International Traveling Fellow, Dr. Sun visited Baylor College of Medicine where he met with Dr. Kosten to discuss his research. Dr. Kosten agreed to mentor Dr. Sun and offered assistance as he developed his fellowship application. Dr. Sun’s goals for the INVEST award are to expand his knowledge in the field of drug addiction, foster research on treatment for addiction, and gain training in basic and clinical research.
NIDA Awards Tuition Waiver for Intensive Summer Institute in Addiction
Cendrine Danae Robinson, a doctoral student at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU), was recently awarded a tuition waiver from the NIDA International Program to attend the Summer Institute on Alcohol, Drugs and Addiction in the Netherlands later this year.
The Summer Institute, a joint initiative of the Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development (ZonMw) and the University of Amsterdam Graduate School of Social Sciences, is a 2-week, intensive multidisciplinary program offering graduate-level and continuing professional development training in addiction, while promoting opportunities for international networking.
For Ms. Robinson, the experience will allow her to explore more fully the concept of cognition as it relates to addiction and loss of control. In addition to gaining a deeper appreciation for the genetic basis for addiction and new approaches to management, Ms. Robinson says the program “will also provide a global perspective of addiction and may promote the development of international collaborations.” She plans to visit the laboratory of Ingmar Franken, Ph.D., Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands, a collaborator of her USU mentor Andrew J. Waters, Ph.D. Says Ms. Robinson, “Attending this program will give me a broader and more global perspective on addiction, and will provide invaluable training to further my career in addiction treatment and research.”
NIDA International Announces 2011 Awards of Excellence Winners
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) International Program is pleased to announce the selection of the 2011 Awards of Excellence winners, who are recognized for their outstanding contributions to international cooperation in drug abuse research and training.
NIDA Awards of Excellence recipients Richard Rawson (left), María Elena Medina-Mora Icaza, and Jeffrey Samet (far right) with NIDA International Program Director Steven W. Gust.
"The Awards of Excellence winners are dedicated and experienced leaders in the international effort to advance drug abuse research and training," said Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., director of the NIDA International Program. "This year's winners have helped to prepare international scientists to work together across political borders, to lead the way for key scientific breakthroughs, and to develop collaborative partnerships to support international research."
The 2011 Awards of Excellence winners were announced June 18, 2011, at the NIDA International Forum in Hollywood, Florida. The 2011 Forum focused on "Building International Collaborative Research on Drug Abuse," acknowledging the importance of individuals from diverse settings working together to address drug abuse and shape drug abuse policy.
The awards are presented each June at the NIDA International Forum.
Awards of Excellence winners are selected based on contributions to three areas essential to the mission of the NIDA International Program: mentoring, international leadership and collaborative research.
The 2011 Awards of Excellence winners are:
Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles, was honored for his leadership in the area of collaborative research, working to narrow the divide between research and practice around the world. He has led addiction research and training projects for the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the U.S. State Department, exporting science-based knowledge to many parts of the world. During the past decade, he has worked with the U.S. State Department on large substance abuse research and treatment projects, disseminating U.S. technology and addiction science to Egypt, Israel, Mexico, the Palestinian Territories, South Africa, and Thailand. He and his colleagues in the Middle East—Drs. Richard Isralowitz (Israel), Mohammed Al-Afifi (Palestinian Territories), and Tarak Gawad (Egypt)—have engaged international experts to develop a process to promote communications, cooperation, and coordination of efforts directed toward the prevention and treatment of drug abuse in the region. Dr. Rawson also directs the capacity-building and training component of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the International Network of Drug Treatment and Rehabilitation Resource Centres (TreatNet), a global initiative to address the need for accessible and quality drug treatment.
María-Elena Medina-Mora Icaza, Ph.D., Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatria Ramón de la Fuente, Mexico, was recognized for international leadership in documenting drug abuse and developing, implementing, and evaluating science-based demand-reduction strategies. She is a leader in United States and Mexico cooperation, having played an active role in the 2010 U.S.–Mexico joint declaration on demand reduction and in recent collaborative initiatives between the U.S. State Department and Mexico to establish a clinical research capability. An internationally recognized epidemiologist, Dr. Medina-Mora has been a member of the World Health Organization Expert Committee on Addictions since 1986 and she has worked tirelessly to standardize drug use reporting across countries and cultures. She has served on the boards of numerous national, regional, and international organizations and publications, among them the International Narcotics Control Board and the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission Scientific Advisory Committee. Dr. Medina-Mora is also a talented teacher and administrator whose students and colleagues successfully follow her example in contributing to the international drug abuse research community.
Jeffrey H. Samet, M.D., Boston University School of Medicine, was recognized for his commitment to mentoring junior scientists and physicians in their pursuit of patient-focused drug abuse research and treatment. Whether mentoring a promising young scientist or an established academic researcher, Dr. Samet's commitment to and investment in guiding scientists in their pursuits in drug abuse-related patient-oriented research is unfaltering. His approachable and enthusiastic style and his ability to tap into researchers' potential have made him an in-demand mentor within the drug abuse research community. He has influenced the careers of innumerable young researchers both in the United States and abroad, particularly in Russia, where he has trained and inspired several junior investigators and is currently a co-principal investigator of a study on HIV and substance abuse in the region. In the United States, he created the NIDA-supported Chief Resident Immersion Training program, a 4-day immersion training for incoming chief residents and their faculty mentors on state-of-the-art methods to diagnose, manage, and teach about substance use disorders. More recently, he is working on another NIDA-funded study to advance the Clinical Addiction Research and Education program, which has successfully fostered physician development in addiction research and education during the past 5 years. Both programs will provide easily adaptable models for the international drug abuse community.
Each year, the NIDA International Program welcomes Awards of Excellence nominations from any individual or organization. Nominations should be accompanied by a detailed written description of the accomplishments of the nominee and an explanation of why those accomplishments merit the NIDA International Program Award of Excellence. Additional information is available at www.drugabuse.gov/international/awards-excellence.
Important Dates and Meetings
The NIDA International Program stays abreast of funding opportunities, upcoming deadlines for fellowship and grant applications, and meetings of interest to the international addiction and drug abuse research community.
Fogarty International Center Program Announcements
Bioethics in Asia Conference
June 27–28, 2011
Contact Professor Xiaomei Zhai
Alcohol and Other Drugs Screening: Brief Intervention and Appropriate Referral in Primary Healthcare Facilities in Western Kenya
Center for Addiction Studies in Africa (CASA) and Global Outreach for Addiction Leadership (GOAL Project)
July 4–8, 2011
12th United Nations Inter-Agency Round Table on Communication for Development
Advancing the Rights of Adolescent Girls Through Communication for Development
New Delhi, India
November 15–18, 2011