ERANID Transnational Funding Proposals Due October 18, 2016
The European Research Area Network on Illicit Drugs (ERANID) has issued a call for proposals investigating society and responses to drug use. Approximately 3 million Euros will be awarded to transnational research teams investigating the impact of drug policies on society and the importance of the social environment in pathways to recovery and socioeconomic reintegration. Potential funding countries include Belgium, France, Italy, Portugal, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.
2016 NIDA International Forum Explores Global Developments in Drug Trends, Practice, and Policy
At left, NIDA International Program Director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., welcomes participants to the 2016 NIDA International Forum. At right, plenary session speaker Susan Weiss, Ph.D., director of the NIDA Division of Extramural Research, talks with CPDD International Committee Chair Clyde McCoy, M.D., University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.
More than 200 participants from around the world attended the 21st Annual NIDA International Forum, held June 10–13, 2016, in Palm Springs, California. International Program Director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., chaired the meeting. A joint NIDA International Forum/College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) poster session featured presentations on international research by 141 scientists from the United States and 45 other countries. CPDD International Committee Chair Clyde McCoy, M.D., University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, encouraged Forum participants to take advantage of the meeting’s education and networking activities.
NIDA Division of Extramural Research Director Susan Weiss, Ph.D., reviewed scientific findings presented during the March 2016 National Institutes of Health (NIH) meeting, Marijuana and Cannabinoids: A Neuroscience Research Summit. Dr. Weiss also highlighted international marijuana studies conducted or under way in Canada, Germany, New Zealand, and the Netherlands. She noted that international research allows scientists to take advantage of natural experiments in marijuana control, prevention, and treatment. Elizabeth Sáenz, M.D., M.P.H.D.C., M.Sc., United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), reported on the international drug control system, the recent United Nations General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem, and UNODC programs that help nations recognize drug use disorders as health problems; address circumstances, conditions, and vulnerabilities that contribute to substance use; and stop discrimination and stigma.
Three panel discussions focused on “new” psychoactive substances, international efforts to educate physicians to treat addiction, and globalization and health consequences of waterpipe tobacco. The International Networking Session featured NIDA social media, National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week, and collaborative research and training programs established by former NIDA Hubert H. Humphrey Drug Abuse Research Fellows in the Czech Republic and the Republic of Georgia. The International Society of Addiction Journal Editors (ISAJE) supported a workshop on preparing research for publication.
More details about the 2016 NIDA International Forum are available online:
IP Presents Awards of Excellence to Three Individuals
NIDA International Program Director Steven W. Gust congratulates the winners of the 2016 NIDA International Awards of Excellence. From left are J. Randy Koch, Virginia Commonwealth University; Marya Hynes, Organization of American States; and Mustafa al’Absi, University of Minnesota Medical School.
NIDA International Awards of Excellence recognize individuals for outstanding contributions to international cooperation in drug abuse research and training. During the NIDA International Forum, these awards were presented for:
- Excellence in mentoring, to J. Randy Koch, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University, for his work with the VCU Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program on Substance Abuse Prevention, Treatment, and Policy to improve the delivery of health care services and promote evidence-based prevention and treatment of substance abuse throughout the world.
- Excellence in international leadership, to Marya Hynes, Organization of American States (OAS), for her work coordinating regional research and training programs, establishing strategic partnerships among Latin American political agencies and international substance abuse research organizations, and launching several NIDA-OAS initiatives, including REDLA – the Latin American Epidemiology Work Group.
- Excellence in collaborative research, to Mustafa al’Absi, Ph.D., University of Minnesota Medical School, for his work investigating the concurrent use of khat and tobacco, building research capacity in the Middle East and North Africa, and establishing the Africa and Middle East Congress on Addiction to help local scientists address issues in addiction and related psychiatric disorders.
CPDD International Committee Presents Award for Best Poster at International Research Poster Session
Colleagues and judges congratulate Tatiana Yaroslavtseva, Russia, for her award for the Best International Research Poster at the joint NIDA International Forum/CPDD International Research Poster Session. Pictured from left (back row) are Evgeny Krupitsky, Russia; Edwin Zvartau, Russia; George Woody, University of Pennsylvania; Suzanne Nielsen, University of New South Wales, Australia; and Steven W. Gust, NIDA International Program. In front are Clyde McCoy, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; Renee Goodwin, Columbia University; and Dr. Yaroslavtseva.
Tatiana Yaroslavtseva of Russia received the 2016 College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) International Committee Award for Best International Research Poster for her presentation, “Fatal Overdose in Recently Detoxified HIV-Infected People Who Inject Drugs in St. Petersburg, Russia—Role of Naltrexone?” She will receive 3 nights’ accommodation at the CPDD conference hotel in her choice of 2017 or 2018. The two semifinalists were Juliana Mejia-Trujillo of Colombia for her poster, “An Experimental Evaluation of a Brief Preventive Intervention,” and Mohammad Muslim of Indonesia for his poster, “HPTN 074: Density-Based Analysis to Identify Spatial Aggregation of Eligible PWID in Jakarta.” The CPDD International Committee created the award to encourage scientists from low- and middle-income countries to present their research at the joint NIDA International Forum/CPDD International Research Poster Session. The research must have been conducted in the author’s home country or another low- or middle-income country. Suzanne Nielsen, Ph.D., University of New South Wales, Australia, chaired the poster contest subcommittee, soliciting entries, accepting PDF entries, and compiling judges’ evaluations. The subcommittee received 21 entries from 13 low- or middle-income countries, with 3 entries each from researchers in Brazil, China, and Russia. Before making a final selection, the judges asked the three semifinalists to give a brief oral introduction to their posters.
NIDA International Forum Honors Dale Weiss as She Retires
Participants at the 2016 NIDA International Forum offered their best wishes to International Program Associate Director Dale Weiss, who retired from NIDA after 30 years of service with the U.S. Government.
Save the Date! 2017 NIDA International Forum Set for Montréal, Canada
Abstract Submission and Travel Award Application Deadline: January 2, 2017
Abstracts and travel award applications for the 2017 NIDA International Forum will be due January 2, 2017. The online abstract submission system will open in early November 2016. The NIDA International Program will coordinate with Canadian officials to assist participants who require a formal letter of invitation to the 2017 meeting in order to obtain a Canadian visa. NIDA will accept requests for visa letters only between March 1 and May 16, 2017; requests require 7 business days to process.
InWomen’s Group to Celebrate 10th Anniversary at 2017 Conference
The International Women’s and Children’s Health and Gender (InWomen’s) Group Conference will celebrate its 10th anniversary at the InWomen’s annual conference in 2017. Chaired by Wendee Wechsberg, Ph.D., RTI International, the annual meeting focuses on addiction research that investigates substance abuse from the perspectives of gender differences and prevalence, prevention, or treatment among women, children, youth, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender populations. The meeting will be held in Montreal, Canada, on June 16, 2017, immediately before the NIDA International Forum and the College on Problems of Drug Dependence Annual Scientific Meeting. For more information, contact InWomen’s Chair Wendee Wechsberg, Ph.D., at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SPR Meeting Features NIDA International Poster Session
The 9th Annual NIDA International Poster Session opened the 2016 annual conference of the Society for Prevention Research (SPR), held in San Francisco, California. SPR President Richard F. Catalano, Jr., Ph.D., University of Washington, and NIDA Prevention Research Branch Acting Chief Bethany Deeds, Ph.D., welcomed presenters and participants. The 25 international posters highlighted drug and alcohol abuse prevention research featuring U.S. collaborations with prevention researchers from 16 nations. NIDA provided travel awards to nine researchers: Lílian Patrícia Silva de Souza, Brazil; Alexandra Oliveira Paiva, Canada; Daniela Castillo, Chile; Renati Solomon, India; Meen B. Poudyal Chhetri, Nepal; Joachim Jacobs, South Africa; Carmen Orte, Spain; Olena Iakunchykova, Ukraine; and Claire Mawditt, United Kingdom. The poster session was held May 31.
NIDA Selects Four Postdoctoral Fellows
NIDA has awarded postdoctoral fellowships to scientists from France, Iran, and Northern Ireland. The French Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (Inserm) has awarded a postdoctoral fellowship to a U.S. scientist. These NIDA-supported fellows will work with mentors who are NIDA employees or grantees at the mentors’ institutions in the United States.
- NIDA–Inserm Postdoctoral Drug Abuse Research Fellows
- Yann Pelloux, Ph.D., of France has been awarded a 12-month extension of his fellowship to expand studies he is conducting with his NIDA Intramural Research Program mentors Yavin Shaham, Ph.D., and Geoffrey Schoenbaum, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Pelloux will continue studies to determine (1) the causal role of different brain regions in context-induced relapse to cocaine seeking after punishment-imposed abstinence; and (2) the effect of chronic, extended access, cocaine self-administration on basal amygdaloid nucleus neuronal encoding.
- Andrew F. Scheyer, Ph.D., of the United States has been awarded a 12-month extension of his fellowship to expand studies he is conducting with his mentor, 1997 NIDA INVEST Fellow Olivier Manzoni, Ph.D., Institut de Neurobiologie de la Méditerranée, in Marseille, France. Dr. Scheyer will investigate mechanisms underlying GABAergic signaling changes in the prefrontal cortex during early development and the impact of in utero and perinatal cannabis exposure on the GABAergic system. He also will characterize and elucidate mechanisms underlying alterations in synaptic plasticity induced by cannabis exposure during juvenile and adolescent development.
- INVEST Drug Abuse Research Fellow. Reza Ghanbari, Ph.D., of Iran is an assistant professor at the Digestive Disease Research Institute of Shariati Hospital in Iran. During his 12-month fellowship, he will use metabolomics—high-throughput analysis of low molecular mass compounds in biofluids—that can reflect the metabolic response of the body to opium exposure and potentially reveal biomarkers of drug abuse. Dr. Ghanbari hopes to clarify the effects of opium on metabolic pathways, identify potential markers of long-term opium addiction, chart the molecular pathway of addiction, and find unknown metabolites that differentiate phenotypes. His mentor is Susan Sumner, Ph.D., RTI International, a NIDA grantee in the NIH Common Fund Metabolomics Program.
- INVEST/Clinical Trials Network Drug Abuse Research Fellow. Anne Campbell, Ph.D., of Queen’s University Belfast, in Northern Ireland, will spend her 6-month fellowship working with Dennis McCarty, Ph.D., Oregon Health and Science University. Dr. Campbell will use a mixed methods approach to examine health records from primary care medical clinics located in Portland, Oregon, and Belfast, Northern Ireland, to assess rates of (1) screening for cannabis use and (2) diagnosis of cannabis use disorders. She also will evaluate the feasibility—and pilot test the use—of a brief screening tool for cannabis use disorders in a Portland primary care setting. Dr. Campbell and Dr. McCarty hope this information will help facilitate development of a cannabis user patient registry that will add specific drug-using behaviors and treatments (where applicable) in patient health care records.
NIDA Awards Tuition Waivers for Three Researchers Attending Dutch Summer Institute on Alcohol, Drugs, and Addiction
The NIDA International Program provided full-tuition scholarships to researchers from Louisiana, Maryland, and New York to participate in the 2016 Dutch Summer Institute on Alcohol, Drugs, and Addiction.
Adrienne McGinn, a Ph.D. candidate at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center New Orleans, conducts research on the neurobiological mechanisms that contribute to drug and alcohol dependence and the effects of context on relapse. She hopes to focus her career on evidence-based science policy.
Christopher Seitz-Brown is a graduate student in clinical psychology at the University of Maryland in College Park. He investigates treatment interventions for substance use disorders and serves as the liaison between the research laboratory and a residential substance use treatment facility, which led to his interest in drug policy.
Adelya Urmanche, a graduate research assistant at the New York University Center for Neural Science, studies the evolution and dynamics of behavioral and neural correlates of impulsive decisionmaking during treatment of opioid use disorders. She is a member of the New York NGO Committee on Drugs (NYNGOC). The NYNGOC, which represents more than 100 civil society organizations from around the globe, provides a platform for discussion of drugs and drug-related subjects and interfaces with the United Nations to collaborate on solutions to global drug issues.
The multidisciplinary summer training program in addiction research was held July 10–21, 2016, at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. Participants included graduate and postdoctoral students, physicians, outreach workers, and program administrators. They joined addiction professionals to learn about the intersection of policy models, prevention, and evidence-based treatment and ways to bridge the gap between research and practice. Dennis McCarty, Ph.D., Oregon Health and Science University, is academic director of the Dutch Summer Institute.