NIDA and the French Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale (Inserm) co-hosted a workshop May 17 during the NeuroFrance 2017 meeting in Bordeaux, France, to renew the NIDA-Inserm Binational Agreement and discuss the jointly sponsored postdoctoral drug abuse research fellowships for U.S. and French scientists. The NIDA-Inserm Postdoctoral Drug Abuse Research Fellowships provide 6 to 12 months of rigorous postdoctoral research training in the United States (for French applicants) or France (for U.S. applicants) and are renewable once. NIDA International Program Director Steven W. Gust, Ph.D., signed the agreement on behalf of NIDA Director Nora Volkow, M.D., and led the U.S. discussions. The NIDA-Inserm Postdoctoral Drug Abuse Research Fellows described their fellowship research experiences:
- Celine Nicolas, Ph.D., whose mentor is NIDA Intramural Research Program Senior Investigator Satoshi Ikemoto, Ph.D.
- Yann Pelloux, Ph.D., who spent his fellowship working with NIDA Intramural Research Program Senior Investigator Yavin Shaham, Ph.D.
- Andrew F. Scheyer, Ph.D., who has been working with former NIDA INVEST Fellow Olivier Manzoni, Ph.D., Institut de neurobiologie de la méditerranée, in Marseille, France.
French speakers in the fellowships meeting included Odette Tomescu-Hatto, Ph.D., director of the Inserm Office for International Relations; Corinne Alberti, M.D., director of the Inserm Thematic Institute on Public Health; Etienne Hirsch, Ph.D., director of the Inserm Thematic Institute on Neurosciences, Cognitive Science, Neurology and Psychiatry; and Mireille Guyader, Ph.D., Inserm representative in the United States. NIDA grantees Benjamin Cravatt, Ph.D., the Scripps Research Institute, and Ken Mackie, M.D., Indiana University, also participated in the fellowships meeting and spoke at the NIDA-Inserm symposium on cannabinoids and cannabis during the NeuroFrance 2017 meeting. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) Director George Koob, Ph.D., chaired the National Institutes of Health (NIH)-Inserm special symposium on reducing the burden of harmful alcohol use. Dr. Gust and NIAAA International Program Officer Peggy Murray participated in a panel discussion on funding mechanisms for public health research during the NIH-Inserm symposium.